See for the online version with illustrations, music and links to the previous translation: http://bhagavata.org/

 

S'RÎMAD BHÂGAVATAM

"The Story of the Fortunate One"

 

 

CANTO 10 - part III:

Summum Bonum

 

Introduction   

Chapter 46 Uddhava Spends the Night in Gokula Talking with Nanda

Chapter 47 The Gopî Reveals Her Emotions: The Song of the Bee

Chapter 48 Krishna Pleases His Devotees

Chapter 49 Akrûra's Mission in Hastinâpura

Chapter 50 Krishna Uses Jarâsandha and Establishes the City of Dvârakâ

Chapter 51 The Deliverance of Mucukunda

Chapter 52 The Lords Leap from a Mountain and Rukminî's Message to Lord Krishna

Chapter 53 Krishna Kidnaps Rukminî

Chapter 54 Rukmî's Defeat and Krishna Married

Chapter 55 The History of Pradyumna

Chapter 56 How the Syamantaka jewel Brought Krishna Jâmbavatî and Satyabhâmâ

Chapter 57 Satrâjit Murdered, the Jewel Stolen and Returned Again

Chapter 58 Krishna also Weds Kâlindî, Mitravindâ, Satyâ, Lakshmanâ and Bhadrâ

Chapter 59 Mura and Bhauma Killed and the Prayers of Bhûmi

Chapter 60 Lord Krishna Teases Queen Rukminî

Chapter 61 Lord Balarâma Slays Rukmî at Aniruddha's Wedding

Chapter 62 Ûshâ in Love and Aniruddha Apprehended

Chapter 63 The Fever in Conflict and Bâna Defeated

Chapter 64 On Stealing from a Brahmin: King Nriga a Chameleon

Chapter 65 Lord Balarâma in Vrindâvana and the Stream Divided

Chapter 66 The False Vâsudeva Paundraka and His Son Consumed by Their Own Fire

Chapter 67 Balarâma Slays the Ape Dvivida

Chapter 68 The Marriage of Sâmba and the Kuru City Dragged Trembling of His Anger

 

 

 Introduction

This book tells the story of the Lord and His incarnations since the earliest records of Vedic history. It is verily the Krishna 'bible' [in Sanskrit called a samhitâ] of the Hindu universe. The Bhagavad Gîtâ relates to this book like the sermon on the mountain by Lord Jesus relates to the full Bible. It has about 18.000 verses contained in 335 chapters and consists of 12 subdivisons of books that are called Cantos. These books together tell the complete history of the Vedic culture and cover the essence of the classical collections of stories called the Purânas. This specific collection of Vedic stories is considered the most important one of all the great eigtheen classical Purânas of India. It includes the cream of the Vedic knowledge compiled from all the Vedic literatures as also the story of the life of Lord Krishna in full (Canto 10). It depicts His birth, His youth, all His wonderful proofs of His divine nature and His superhuman feats of defeating all kinds of demons up to the great Mahâbhârat war at Kurukshetra. This leading Purâna also called the 'perfect Purâna', is a brilliant story that has been brought to the West by S'rîla A.C. Bhaktivedânta Swami Prabhupâda, a Caitanya Vaishnava, a bhakti (devotional) monk of Lord Vishnu [the name for the transcendental form of Lord Krishna]. He undertook the daring task of enlightening the materialist westerners, the advanced philosophers and theologians, in order to help them to overcome the perils and loneliness of impersonalism and the philosophy of emptiness.

For the translation the author of this internet version has consulted the translations of C.L Goswami. M.A., Sâstrî (from the Gîtâ Press, Gorakhpur), the paramparâ [disciplic succession] version of S'rîla Vishvanâtha Cakravarti Thhâkura and the later version of this book by S'rîla A.C. Bhaktivedânta Swami Prabhupâda. The latter translators as âcâryas [guru teaching by example] of the age-old Indian Vaishnava tradition are representatives of a culture of reformation of the devotion for God or bhakti, the way it has been practiced in India since the 16th century. This reformation contends that the false authority of the caste system and single dry book knowledge is to be rejected. S'rî Krishna Caitanya also called Caitanya Mahâprabhu, the avatâra [an incarnation of the Lord] who heralded this reform, restored the original purpose of developing devotion to God and endeavored especially for dissemination of the two main sacred scriptures expounding on that devotion in relation to Krishna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. These scriptures are the Bhagavad Gîtâ and this Bhâgavata Purâna, that is also called the S'rîmad Bhâgavatam, from which all the Vaishnava âcâryas derived their wisdom for the purpose of instruction and the shaping of their devotion. The word for word translations as also the full text and commentaries of this book were studied within and without the Hare Krishna temples where the teaching of this culture takes place in India, Europe and America. The purpose of the translation is first of all to make this glorious text available to a wider audience over the Internet. Since the Bible, the Koran and numerous other holy texts are readily available, the author meant that this book could not stay behind on the shelf of his own bookcase as a token of material possessiveness. When we started with this endeavor in the year 2000 there was no proper web presentation of this book. Knowledge not shared is knowledge lost, and certainly this type of knowledge which stresses the yoga of non-possessiveness and devotion as one of its main values could not be left out. The version of Swami Prabhupâda is very extensive covering some 2400 pages of plain fine printed text including his commentaries. And that were only the first ten Cantos. The remaining two Cantos were posthumously published by his pupils in the full of his spirit. I thus was faced with two daring challenges: one was to concatenate the text or make a readable running narrative of the book that had been dissected to the single word and the second challenge was to put it into a language that would befit the 21st century with all its modern and postmodern experience and digital progress of the present cultural order of the world, without losing anything of its original verses. Thus another verse to verse as-it-is translation came about in which Vishvanâtha's, Prabhupâda's and Sâstrî's words were pruned, retranslated and set to the understanding and realization of today. This realization in my case originated directly from the disciplic line of succession of the Vaishnava line of âcâryas (teachers) as also from a realization of the total field of indian philosophy of enlightenment and yoga discipline as was brought to the West by also non-Vaishnava gurus and maintained by their pupils. Therefore the author has to express his gratitude to all these great heroes who dared to face the adamantine of western philosophy with all its doubts, concreticism and skepticism. Especially the pupils of Prabhupâda, members of the renounced order (sannyâsîs) who instructed the author in the independence and maturity of the philosophy of the bhakti-yogis of Lord Caitanya need to be mentioned. I was already initiated in India by a non-Vaishnava guru and have been given the name of Swami Anand Aadhar ('teacher of the foundation of happiness'). That name the Krishna community converted into Anand Aadhar Prabhu ('master of the foundation of happiness') without further ceremonies of Vaishnava initiation (apart from a basic training). With the name Anand Aadhar I am a withdrawn devotee, a so-called vânaprashta, who does his devotional service independently in the silence and modesty of his local adaptations of the philosophy.

In most cases the word for word translations and grammatical directions of S'rîla A.C. Bhaktivedânta Swami Prabhupâda/ISKCON, Vishvanâtha Cakravarti Thhâkura and C.L. Goswami. M.A., Sâstrî have been followed as they were used in their translations and I have checked them with the help of the Monier-Williams Sanskrit Dictionary [see the file of the terms used]. In footnotes and between square brackets [ ] sometimes a little comment and extra info is given to accommodate the reader when the original text is drawing from a more experienced approach. On the internetsite bhagavata.org of this book, my version refers to the version of Prabhupâda that is linked up at each verse together with my own previous version so that it is possible to retrace at any moment what I have done with the text. This is in accordance with the scientific tradition of the Vaishnava community.

For the copyright on this translation the so-called Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License has been chosen. This means that one is free to copy, distribute and alter the text on the condition of attribution (refer to the name of Anand Aadhar and to my website address bhagavata.org), that the resulting work can only be distributed under the same or similar license to this one and that one cannot use the text for commercial purposes. For all other usage one will have to contact the author.

With love and devotion, Anand Aadhar Prabhu, Enschede, The Netherlands, April 17, 2012.
 

 


Chapter 46: Uddhava Spends the Night in Gokula Talking with Nanda

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'The best adviser of the Vrishnis was Krishna's beloved friend Uddhava [see also 3.2], a direct disciple of Brihaspati and a man of the finest intelligence. (2) One day the Supreme Lord Hari, who removes the distress of the surrendered souls, grabbed his hand and spoke to him, His dearest and most faithful devotee. (3) 'Please Uddhava, oh gentle one, go for the satisfaction of My parents to Vraja and relieve through My message the gopîs from the mental pain of being separated from Me. (4) With their minds fixed on Me, they, absorbed in Me, have made Me the purpose of their lives and abandoned all their material ties [with their husband, home and children, see 10.29: 4]. Understanding the ones who for My sake left behind this world and its moral obligations, I sustain those who have only Me as their beloved and dearmost Self. (5) When My best one, the women of Gokula remember Me, their dearest object of love being far away, they become stunned being overwhelmed by the anxiety of separation [see also B.G. 2: 62-64]. (6) With My promises to return, the cowherd women who are fully dedicated to Me, with great difficulty manage to hold on and in some way keep their lives somewhat going.'

(7) S'rî S'uka said: 'After having said this oh King, Uddhava respectfully accepted the message of his Maintainer, mounted his chariot and set off for the cowherd village of Nanda. (8) Just as the sun was setting, the fortunate soul reached Nanda's pastures, passing there unnoticed because of the dust of the hooves of the animals coming home.  (9-13) With the sounds of the bulls in rut fighting each other for the fertile cows, with the cows with filled udders running after their calves, with the beauty of the white calves capering here and there and with the milking and the loud reverberation of flutes, the finely ornamented gopîs and gopas, auspiciously singing about the deeds of Balarâma and Krishna, were resplendent to behold. It was all most attractive with the homes of the gopas filled with incense, lamps and flower garlands for the worship of the fire, the sun, the guests, the cows, the brahmins, the forefathers and the gods [see also 10.24: 25]. The forest flowering on all sides echoed with the swarms of bees, singing birds, the kârandava ducks and the swans crowding around the adorning bowers of lotuses. (14) After having arrived there Nanda approached the dear follower of Krishna and embraced him, happy to be reverential with Lord Vâsudeva in mind. (15) He fed him with the finest food, had him comfortably seated on a nice sofa to be relieved of the fatigue and had his feet massaged and so on. Then he inquired: (16) 'Oh dear and most fortunate one, does our friend the son of S'ûra [Vasudeva] who is so devoted to his well-wishers, fare well now that he is released and was reunited with his children? (17) What a luck that the wicked Kamsa, who constantly hated the always righteous and saintly Yadus, together with his followers has been killed because of his sins! (18) Is Krishna still thinking of us, His mother, His well-wishers and friends, the gopas of Vraja of whom He is the master, the cows, Vrindâvana forest and the mountain [see 10.24: 25]? (19) Is Govinda coming back to see His relatives once again, so that we may glance upon His face, His beautiful nose, His nice smile and eyes? (20) Krishna, that so very great Soul, has protected us against insurmountable mortal dangers like a forest fire, the wind and rain, as also against a bull and a serpent. (21) The memory of Krishna's valorous deeds, playful sidelong glances, smiles and words, my dear, made all of us forget our material actions. (22) In Him the mind of those who see the locations where He played, the rivers, the hills and the different parts of the forest that were decorated by His feet, finds its total absorption. (23) I think that Krishna and Râma who arrived here for a great and divine cause of the gods, as confirmed by Garga [see 10.8: 12], are the two most elevated ones among the demigods. (24) Kamsa, who had the strength of ten thousand elephants, the wrestlers and the king of the elephants, after all have been playfully killed by the both of Them, as easy as animals are by the lion king. (25) A solid bow as long as three tâlas [tree lenghts] was by Him, regal as an elephant, broken like a stick and for seven days He with one hand held up a mountain! (26) Pralamba, Dhenuka, Arishtha, Trinâvarta, Baka and other demons who had conquered both Sura and Asura, were by Them killed out here with ease.'

 (27) S'rî S'uka said: 'Nanda fully immersed in Krishna thus over and over remembering Him, became extremely anxious and fell silent, overcome by the force of love. (28) Also mother Yas'odâ overhearing the descriptions of her son's activities in her love gave way to her tears with her breasts moistened. (29) When Uddhava saw the two of them in their love for the Supreme Lord in this condition of supreme attraction, he filled with joy spoke to Nanda. (30) S'rî Uddhava said: 'Having developed a mentality like this for Nârâyana, the spiritual master of all, the two of you are for certain the most praiseworthy of all embodied beings on the planet oh respectful souls. (31) The two of Mukunda and Balarâma are the seed and womb of the universe, They are the Original Male Principle [purusha] and His Creative Primeval Energy [pradhâna] who with knowledge and control guide the living beings in their confused state. (32-33) The person who, giving up his life, but for a moment immerses his impure mind [in Him], that very instant will immediately eradicate all traces of his karma and find himself heading for the supreme destination in a spiritual form with the luster of the sun. With you good souls giving Him, Nârâyana, the Soul and Cause of All, the purest and most exceptional love, what other good deeds would there for you remain to perform? (34) Before long Acyuta, [as] the Lord Supreme, the Master and Protector of the Devotees, will satisfy His parents and return to Vraja. (35) In the [wrestling] arena having killed Kamsa, the enemy of all Yadus, Krishna will be true to His word that He would return to you. (36) Please do not falter oh most fortunate souls, you will see Krishna in the near future. He is present within the hearts of all living beings like fire in firewood. (37) No one is dear or not dear to Him, nor does He, who is free from false pride, regard anyone superior or inferior. He is of an equal respect for everyone [compare S'rî S'rî S'ikshâshthaka and B.G. 9: 29]. (38) For Him there is no father and mother, no wife, no children and so forth. No one is related to Him, nor is anyone strange to Him and with Him there is neither a question of a [material] body or birth [compare B.G. 10: 3]. (39) For Him there is no karma in this world obliging Him to appear in wombs of a pure, impure or mixed nature. Yet He for the sake of His pastimes manifests to redeem His saintly devotees [see B.G. 3: 22; 4: 7; 13: 22]. (40) Even though He is transcendental beyond the modes called goodness, passion and ignorance, He accepts it to play by the modes. He, the Unborn One, is thus of creation, maintenance and destruction. (41) Just as for someone when he whirls around, the ground seems to be whirling, so too it appears that - when one thinks to be one's body -  oneself is the doer, while it is the mind that is acting [*, compare B.G. 3: 27]. (42) He is not just the son of the two of you, He is the Supreme Lord Hari, the Lord of Control who is the Son, the Soul, the Father and the Mother of everyone. (43) That what is seen or heard, what is in the past, the present or in the future, that what is stationary, mobile, large or small, can in no way be assigned a status separate from Acyuta. He, the Supersoul, is the reality and welfare of all and everything.'

 (44) While Nanda and Krishna's messenger were speaking this way, the night came to an end oh King, and the gopîs who had risen, lighted the lamps in the house for the worship and began to churn the butter. (45) As the women were moving their hips and breasts while pulling the ropes, they radiated in the light of the lamps, with the rows of bangles on their arms, with their jewels, with their faces red of the kunkum and glowing from their earrings and necklaces. (46) All inauspiciousness was dispelled in every direction with the loud singing of the lotus eyed women of Vraja whose reverberating sound, mixed with the sounds of churning butter, filled the air. (47) When the almighty sun rose, the residents of Gokula saw the golden chariot outside the house of Nanda and wondered: 'Whose chariot is this? (48) Maybe Akrûra has come, that servant of Kamsa's desires who took our lotus-eyed Krishna to the city of Mathurâ. (49) Would he, with his master satisfied, be here now to perform the funeral rites with us?' And while the women were speaking thus, Uddhava came walking who had finished his morning duties.'

*: Śrīla Viśvanātha Cakravartī gives a parallel idea: Although our happiness and distress are caused by our own interaction with the material qualities, we perceive the Lord to be their cause.


 


Chapter 47: The Gopî Reveals Her Emotions: The Song of the Bee

(1-2) S'rî S'uka said: 'When the women of Vraja saw him, the servant of Krishna, with his long arms, with his lotus eyes, wearing a yellow garment and a lotus garland, with his effulgent lotus like countenance and polished earrings, they were quite astonished and wondered where this handsome, young man came from and to whom he belonged who wore clothes and ornaments like those of Krishna. Talking like this they all eagerly crowded around him who enjoyed the protection of the lotus feet of Uttamas'loka [the Lord Praised in the Scriptures]. (3) With due respect bowing down before him in humility and shyly smiling with their glances, sweet words and such, they asked it him, after first having taken him separate and offered him a seat, for they had understood that he was an envoy of the Husband of the Goddess of Fortune. (4) 'We know that you arrived here as the personal associate of the chief of the Yadus who, as your Master, has sent you here to satisfy His parents. (5) We really would not know why else He should have thought of this cow place. Even for a sage the bonds of affection with one's relatives are difficult to relinquish. (6) The interest in others manifested out of self-interest proves itself as friendship for as long as it takes; it is a pretense as good as the interest of bees for flowers or of men for women. (7) Prostitutes abandon a penniless man, citizens deny an incompetent king, graduates leave behind their teacher and priests leave [their attendants] after being compensated. (8) Birds abandon a tree rid of its fruits and guests leave the house where they ate. Animals leave the forest that burned down and a lover likewise leaves the woman he enjoyed to unite with.'

(9-10) Now that Uddhava, the messenger of Krishna, had arrived in their midst, the gopîs who thus with their words, bodies and minds were focussed on Krishna, put aside their worldly concerns. Without restraint they sang and cried in the constant remembrance of the youth and childhood activities of their Sweetheart. (11) One gopî [noted as Râdhâ, see also *] seeing a honeybee as she meditated on the association with Krishna, imagined it to be a messenger sent by her Beloved and spoke as follows. (12) The gopî said: 'Oh honeybee, you friend of a cheater, do not touch my feet with your whiskers still carrying the kunkum from His garland, the powder that rubbed off from the breasts of a rival lover. One who sends a messenger like you is derided in the assembly of the Yadus. Let the Lord of Madhu [Himself] be of mercy with the women [instead] [prajalpa **]! (13) One time He made us drink the nectar of His bewildering lips and then suddenly abandoned us like we were some flowers. I wonder why the goddess of fortune [Padmâ] serves His lotus feet just like you [oh bee]. That must be so because her mind, alas, has been stolen by Krishna's chitchat [parijalpa ***]. (14) Oh mister sixlegs, dear bee, why are you singing so busily about the Master of the Yadus in front of us who are old friends of this Friend of Vijaya [Arjuna] who left behind their homes? You better sing of His topics before His [new] girlfriends, the pain of whose breasts He [now has] relieved. His sweethearts will provide you the charity you seek [vijalpa *4]. (15) Which women in heaven, on earth and below would not be available to Him who, so unattainable, can deceive you with His charming smiles and arching eyebrows? When the wife of the Fortunate One is of worship in the dust of His feet, what then would be our value? Luckily for those feeling bad about it, there is the sound vibration [to be chanted of] 'Uttamas'loka' [ujjalpa *5]. (16) Keep your little head away from my feet! I know you, you expert who as a messenger from Mukunda learned the diplomacy of flatter! Why should I make amends with Him who, so ungrateful, has abandoned us, we who for His sake in this life have left behind their children, husbands and everything else [sañjalpa *6]? (17) Against all rules He [as Râma, see 9.10 & 11] as cruel as a hunter shot the king of the monkeys [Vâlî], was conquered by a woman [Sîtâ], disfigured a woman driven by lust [S'ûrpanakhâ, the sister of Râvana] and, after consuming His tribute, [as Vâmana] bound up Bali like a crow [see 8.21]. Therefore enough of all friendliness with that Black Boy who impossibly can be given up when we keep talking about His stories [avajalpa *7]. (18) Those ears are freed from all sins, who just once enjoyed but a drop of the nectar of the pastimes that He constantly performed. Such a one is completely liberated from the duality, wherefrom any [personal, material] sense of duty is instantly ruined. For that reason many people here [in Vrindâvana], by therewith rejecting their miserable homes and families, end up wretched and, just like birds, practice the livelihood of begging [abhijalpa *8]. (19) We, taking His deceptive words for true, just like the black deer's foolish doe wives who trust the hunter's song, repeatedly experienced this sharp pain of lust that was caused by the touch of His fingernails. Oh messenger, I beg you, talk of something else [ajalpa *9]! (20) My sweet little friend, have you been sent back here by my Beloved? Please ask me what you want, you are to be honored by me my dearest. Why are you here raising in us these [amorous] feelings for Him that are so impossible to relinquish? For is, oh gentle one, His consort the goddess of fortune S'rî, not always present with Him on His chest [pratijalpa *10]? (21) What a pity that the son of Nanda resides in Mathurâ now. Does He think so now and then of the household affairs of His father, His friends and the cowherd boys oh great soul? Or else, does He still talk about us, His maidservants? When will He lay His aguru-scented hand on our heads [sujalpa *11]?'

(22) S'rî S'uka said: 'Uddhava, having heard how the cowherd girls were longing to see Krishna, in order to pacify them thereupon related to them the message of their Sweetheart. (23) S'rî Uddhava said: 'You have dedicated your minds unto the Supreme Lord Vâsudeva and are thus honorable to all people because you, good selves, therewith fulfilled your life's purpose [of modeling the emotions of relating to Him]. (24) By means of donations, vows [of poverty, celibacy and fasting], sacrifices, using prayer beads [japa], studying and by turning inward, concentrating and meditating, as also by other kinds of auspicious practices [see also yama, niyama, vidhi and bhâgavata dharma], the bhakti, the devotional service is realized unto Krishna. (25) The unexcelled [standard of] devotion unto the Supreme Lord Uttamas'loka, that by you good people fortunately has been established, is even hard to attain for the sages. (26) To your great fortune you have chosen to leave your sons, husbands, physical comforts, relatives and homes for the sake of that superior, male personality called Krishna. (27) By the wholehearted love that ruled you because of your separation from Adhokshaja [the Transcendental Lord] oh glorious ones, you have done me [the Lord and everyone] a great favor. (28) Please, good ladies, listen to the message that I as a faithful servant of my master came bringing to you from your Beloved for the sake of your happiness.

(29) The Supreme Lord has said: 'You women are actually never separated from Me ever being present as the Soul of All. Even as all the elements, the ether, the fire, the air, the water and the earth are part of all beings, I am there as the union of all the elements of the mind, the life air, the senses and the natural modes. (30) By means of Myself I create, destroy and sustain Myself in Myself, through the power of My deluding potency consisting of the material elements, the senses and the modes of nature. (31) The soul full of pure spiritual knowledge, that separately exists free from the association of the modes, is perceived  [as the constant witness] in the operations of deep sleep, dream sleep and waking consciousness. (32) The mind by which one meditates upon the objects of the senses constitutes a mirage, even as a dream constitutes an illusion when one wakes up. Staying alert one should bring that what [in the mind] gathers from the input of the senses under control [compare B.G. 2: 68 and 6: 35-36]. (33) Just as the ocean is the end station for all the rivers, this [insight] is the end conclusion of all Vedic literatures, analysis and yoga, of all intelligent people, renunciation, penance, sense control and truthfulness [compare B.G. 2: 70]. (34) The fact then that I, so dear to your eyes, am situated so far away from you, is according to My wish that your mind - that is subjected to attraction - meditates upon Me. (35) The mind of a woman remains absorbed more when her lover is far away than when she has him present before her eyes. (36) Because in the constant remembrance of Me your minds are totally absorbed in Me and free from all restlessness, you will see Me appear soon. (37) Those remaining here in Vraja while I was sporting at night in the forest [see 10.29: 9] and for that reason did not experience the râsa dance, were as fortunate to achieve Me by thinking of My luster.'

(38) S'rî S'uka said: 'The women of Vraja hearing the instructions thus imparted by their Beloved, pleased as they were to have their memories revived by the message, thereupon addressed Uddhava. (39) The gopîs said: 'The cause of the suffering, Kamsa, the enemy of the Yadus, has fortunately together with his followers been killed. What a blessing that Acyuta at present lives happily with His well-wishers who [therewith] achieved everything they desired. (40) Oh gentle one, maybe the elder brother of Gada [Krishna, see 9.24: 46gives the women of the city the love that belongs to us, we who affectionately revere Him bashfully with inviting smiles and glances. (41) How will our Darling, so versed in all the matters of love, not become bound by the bewildering gestures and words of the city women, who are also [just as we] constantly of worship? (42) And... does Krishna, oh pious one, remember us; does He ever mention us, village girls, when He freely talks in the company of the city women? (43) Does He recall those nights in which He enjoyed in Vrindâvana, that place so enchanting because of the lotus, the jasmine and the moon? He at the time with tinkling ankle bells danced with us, His beloved girlfriends, who glorified Him for His attractive stories. (44) Will that descendant of Das'ârha return to this place and with His touch bring us back to life who are tormented by the sorrow He gave rise to Himself? Will He do that even as Indra with his clouds would [replenish] a forest? (45) But why would Krishna come here now that He, surrounded by all His well-wishers, is happy having attained a kingdom, having killed His enemies and having married the daughters of kings? (46) What purpose would there, for us forest-dwellers or for other women, be to fulfill unto Him, the great Soul and husband of the goddess of fortune, whose every desire is already fulfilled? He is complete in Himself! (47) The greatest happiness is found in non-expectancy, so even the unchaste Pingalâ stated [a courtesan, see 11.8]. Yet, for us focused on Krishna who very well know this, it is most difficult not to cherish any hope. (48) Who is capable of forgetting the intimate talks with Uttamas'loka, He from whose body the goddess never moves away despite of Him not desiring her? (49) In the company of Sankarshana oh prabhu, Krishna with the cows and the sounds of the flute passed through the different places in the forest, by the rivers and the hills. (50) Ah, time and again those places carrying the glory of His footprints, remind us of the son of Nanda we can never forget. (51) Oh, how can we ever forget Him with our hearts being stolen by His lovely gait, His playful glances, His generous smiles and nectarean words? (52) Oh Master, Master of the Goddess and Master of Vraja; oh Destroyer of the Suffering, oh Govinda, lift Gokula out of the ocean of misery it is submerged in!'

(53) S'rî S'uka said: 'With their fever of separation removed by Krishna's messages, they thereupon worshiped him, Uddhava, recognizing him as Adhokshaja Himself. (54) Remaining there for some months he, singing about the topics of Krishna's pastimes, gave joy to Gokula by dispelling the sorrow of the gopîs. (55) All the days that Uddhava dwelled in Nanda's cowherd village, passed for the residents of Vraja in a single moment, because they were filled with discussions about Krishna. (56) Seeing the rivers, forests, mountains, valleys and flowering trees, the servant of the Lord took pleasure in reminding the people of Vraja of Krishna. (57) Noticing how confused and such the gopîs were in their absorption in Krishna, Uddhava was extremely pleased and offered them all respect while singing the following: (58) 'On this earth these young cowherd women are the only ones of [real success] in acquiring a body, for they achieved the perfection of an exclusive love for Govinda, the Soul of All - a love that is desired by sages, by ourselves and by those afraid of a material existence. Of what use would the [three] brahminical births be [of deriving an existence from one's parents, one's guru and one's sacrifices] for someone who has a taste for the topics of the Unlimited Lord? (59) What is one compared to these women who, impure in their conduct towards Krishna, wander in the forests? What is one's position compared to this stage of perfect love for the Supreme Soul? For the one who is of constant worship, even when he is not very learned, most certainly the Lord directly bestows the highest good, the good that imbibed works like the king of all medicines [that is: irrespective the person]. (60) The blessing the Vraja ladies found in the embrace of Uttamas'loka in the râsa dance, was not bestowed on the goddess on His chest who is so intimately associated with Him, was not His mercy for the heavenly damsels with their lotus flower scent and luster, nor was it granted to any other kind of woman [10.33]. (61) Oh, let me be devoted to the dust of the lotus feet of the gopîs in Vrindâvana! Let me be any of the bushes, creepers or herbs there [in relation] to them, to those women who in worship of  the feet of Mukunda, whom one seeks with the help of the Vedas, abandoned the path of civil correctitude and left behind the family members that are so difficult to give up. (62) The feet of the Supreme Lord where the goddess, Lord Brahmâ and the other gods with all their desires fulfilled, even as accomplished masters of yoga, can only dream of, were by Krishna in the gathering of the râsa dance placed on their breasts, so that they by embracing them could overcome their anguish. (63) I offer my obeisances again and again to the dust of the feet of the women of Nanda's cowherd village, whose loud chanting of Krishna's glories purifies the three worlds.'

(64) S'rî S'uka said: '[Uddhava,] the descendant of Das'ârha thereupon took leave of Yas'odâ, Nanda, the gopas and the gopîs, mounted his chariot and was about to leave. (65) But when he left, Nanda and the others approached him with various items of worship in their hands and said affectionately and with tears in their eyes: (66) 'May our mental activities be founded on Krishna's lotus feet, may our words be an expression of His names and may our bodies when they bow down and such, do so for His sake. (67) May there, wherever we for our work have to wander to the Lord's will, may there, with whatever we do and give away in charity, be the attachment to Krishna our Lord.'

(68) After the gopas thus had honored him with Krishna bhakti oh first among men, Uddhava returned to Mathurâ, the city that [now] enjoyed the protection of Krishna. (69) After bringing Krishna his obeisances, he told Him about the intense devotion of the residents of Vraja and next gave Vasudeva, Balarâma and the king [Ugrasena] the gifts sent along for them.' 

*: To substantiate the claim that this concerns Râdhâ, quotes S'rîla Jîva Gosvâmî the following verses from the Agni Purâna:  "At dawn the gopîs inquired from Krishna's servant, Uddhava, about the Lord's pastimes and recreation. Only S'rîmatî Râdhârânî, immersed in thought of Krishna, withdrew Her interest in the talks. Then Râdhâ, who is worshiped by the residents of Her Vrindâvana village, spoke up in the midst of Her girlfriends. Her words were full of pure transcendental knowledge and expressed the ultimate portion of the Vedas."

**: S'rîla Vis'vanâtha Cakravartî points out that this and the following nine verses exemplify ten kinds of impulsive speech [citra-jalpa or strange chatter] spoken by a lover as expressions of godconscious folly or divine madness [divyonmâda]. S'rîla Rûpa Gosvâmî in the Ujjvala-nîlamani (14.182) says to this expression: "Prajalpa is speech that denigrates the tactlessness of one's lover with expressions of disrespect. It is spoken in a mood of envy, jealousy and pride."

***: Ujjvala-nîlamani (14.184): 'Parijalpa is that speech which, through various devices, shows one's own cleverness by exposing the mercilessness, duplicity, unreliability and so on of one's Lord.'

*4: Ujjvala-nîlamani (14.186): "According to learned authorities, vijalpa is sarcastic speech that is addressed to the killer of Agha and that openly expresses jealousy while at the same time hinting at one's angry pride."

*5: Ujjvala-nîlamani (14.188): "The declaration of Lord Hari's duplicitous nature in a mood of spite born of pride, together with jealously spoken insults directed against Him, has been termed ujjalpa by the wise."

*6: Ujjvala-nîlamani (14.190): "The learned describe sañjalpa as that speech which decries with deep irony and insulting gestures the beloved's ungratefulness and so on."

*7: Ujjvala-nîlamani (14.192): "Saintly persons have concluded that when a lover, impelled by jealousy and fear, declares that Lord Hari is unworthy of her attachment because of His harshness, lustiness and dishonesty, such speech is called avajalpa."

*8: Ujjvala-nîlamani (14.194): "When a lover indirectly states with remorse that her beloved is fit to be given up, such speech, uttered like the plaintive crying of a bird, is called abhijalpa."

*9: Ujjvala-nîlamani (14.196): "A statement spoken in disgust, describing how the male lover is deceitful and brings one misery, and also implying that He gives happiness to others, is known as âjalpa."

*10: Ujjvala-nîlamani (14.198): "When the lover humbly states that although she is unworthy of attaining her beloved she cannot give up hoping for a conjugal relationship with Him, such words, spoken with respect for her beloved's message, are called pratijalpa."

S'rîla Vis'vanâtha Cakravartî explains that the goddess of fortune, S'rî, has the power to assume many different forms. Thus when Krishna enjoys other women, she stays on His chest in the form of a golden line. When He is not consorting with other women, she puts aside this form and gives Him pleasure in Her naturally beautiful form of a young woman.

*11: Ujjvala-nîlamani (14.200): "When, out of honest sincerity, a lover questions S'rî Hari with gravity, humility, unsteadiness and eagerness, such speech is known as sujalpa."

 

 


Chapter 48: Krishna Pleases His Devotees

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'The Supreme Lord, the Soul of All who Sees Everything, with understanding [for Uddhava's report of desirous women] wished to please the serving girl [Trivakrâ, as He had promised 10.42: 12] and went to the house of the woman who was troubled by lust [see 10.42: 10]. (2) It was richly endowed with expensive furnishings, replete with sensual articles and was beautified with strings of pearls and banners, canopies, beds and seats as also fragrant incense, oil lamps, flower garlands and sandalwood. (3) Seeing Him arriving at her house, she immediately rose to her feet and together with her female companions hurried to receive Acyuta properly, who respectfully was welcomed with an excellent seat and so on. (4) The saintly Uddhava was also worshiped, but he touched his seat and sat on the floor. Krishna, faithful to the ways of human society, then laid Himself without delay upon a luxurious bed [in the inner chambers]. (5) She prepared her body by bathing, anointing, dressing up with ornaments, garlands and perfume, bethel nut and drinking fragrant fluids and such, and then shyly and with playful smiles approached Mâdhava with tempting glances. (6) Calling forward the lovely woman, who was shy in fear of the novel contact, He took hold of her two with bangles ornamented hands and placed the beauty on the bed to enjoy together with her, she whose only proof of piety consisted of having offered ointment. (7) Smelling the feet of the Unlimited Lord and embracing within her arms, between her breasts, her Lover, the Personification of All Ecstasy, wiped away the pain that because of Cupid burned in her breasts, chest and eyes. Thus she succeeded in letting go of her so very long standing distress. (8) Because she had offered body ointment to Him, the Master of Enlightenment, she had obtained the Lord who is so hard to obtain. But unfortunately [compare 4.9: 31] she begged the following: (9) 'Please Beloved, stay here for a few days together with me! Enjoy, for I cannot bear to give up Your association oh Lotus flower-eyes.'

(10) He who is of Respect for Others, considerate with her, granted her the boon she desired [in the form of a promise], whereupon the Lord of All together with Uddhava returned to His own supremely opulent residence. (11) The one who, in full worship of Vishnu, the Controller of All Controllers who is so difficult to honor [other than by pure devotion], choses for a benediction that is spiritually too easy, is with that superficiality not engaged very intelligently [see also 7.15: 36].

(12) Krishna, the Master, also desired to please Akrûra and engage him in some business as well, and thus He went together with Uddhava and Balarâma to his house. (13-14) When he saw Them coming, the greatest of all illustrious personalities who were his relatives, he joyfully rose to his feet to embrace Them for a welcome. Bowed down to Krishna and Râma he was greeted by Them whereupon he, after They had taken their seats, worshiped Them as was prescribed. (15-16) The water he had used to wash Their feet he sprinkled all over his head oh King, after which he presented gifts, the finest clothing, sandalwood, garlands and excellent ornaments. With his head bowed down he in worship placed His feet on his lap to massage them, and addressed with humility, facing down, Krishna and Râma as follows: (17) 'To our good fortune the two of You have killed the sinful Kamsa as also his brothers and followers. Thus delivering Your dynasty from endless troubles You have made it prosperous. (18) You two are the pradhâna and purusha [material and efficient] causes of the universe that are one with the universe and apart from whom not a single cause or effect [para-apara] can be found. (19) This universe You created from Your energies, You have subsequently entered. Thus You can be perceived in the many [forms] oh Absolute Truth, that we know about from listening to the scriptures and by direct experience. (20) Even as the earth element and the other elements differently manifest themselves in various species of living mobile and immobile beings, You, the Single One Self-reliant Self, the Supersoul, manifest in a multitude [of souls] within those different life forms. (21) You create, maintain and then again destroy the universe, but You are, with the qualities of Your potencies: [respectively] the passion, the  goodness and the ignorance [the gunas], not bound to those actions or their modes. For what could for You now, who are the Soul of All Knowledge, constitute a cause of bondage? (22) Because it has never been proven that You are determined by physical matters and such, there is with You no question of a literal birth or of material opposites. For that reason there exists for You in fact no bondage or any liberation [compare 10.14: 26]. And if that happens to be so according to Your sweet will [see e.g. 10.11: 7], it is the consequence of our mistaken notion about You [like in 10.23: 10-11]. (23) For the benefit of this universe You proclaim the classical path of the Veda and assume forms in the mode of goodness the very moment the path is obstructed by wicked persons adhering to godlessness. (24) You as that very same person oh Master, have now descended in the home of Vasudeva together with Your plenary portion [Balarâma]. This You have done in order to spread the fame of the [Yadu] dynasty and to remove from this earth the burden of the hundreds of armies present there by killing their kings [see also 1.11: 34], kings who are expansions of the adversaries of the god-fearing souls [see e.g. 7.1: 40-46]. (25) Today oh Lord, our residence has been most blessed by the arrival of You, Adhokshaja, the Spiritual Master of the Universe who are the embodiment of all the gods, forefathers, living beings and humans, You from whose feet the water [of the Ganges, see 5.17] washes that purifies the three worlds. (26) What other scholar would there be for us? To whom else should we turn for shelter but to You, the well-wisher whose loving words for His devotees are always faithful? For grateful to the supporters who worship You, You give all that they desire, even Yourself with whom there is never any diminution or increase [see also B.G. 2: 40]. (27) We to our fortune have, with us here, before our eyes You who even for the masters of yoga and the most prominent among the enlightened ones are a goal hard to attain. Please swiftly cut through the ties of our delusional existence that result from Your material energy: our children, wife, wealth, honorable friends, our home, body and so on.'

(28)
Thus extensively being worshiped by His devotee, Krishna the Supreme Lord smiled at Akrûra and spoke with words that practically swept him of his feet. (29) The Supreme Lord said: 'You, Our paternal uncle and praiseworthy friend, are Our spiritual master. We are always the ones depending on you and [like your sons] need to be protected, maintained and graced by you. (30) Someone like you belongs to the most elevated among the honorable ones and deserves it to be served by anyone desiring the saintliest and highest good. Demigods are always after their own interests, but pure devotees are not. (31) Not to decry the sacred places that consist of water [rivers] or the deities that are made of clay and stone: they purify in the course of time, but the saints [themselves] bring purification after just once having met them. (32) You certainly are the very best of all Our well-wishers. I would like you to go for Us to the city named after the elephant [Hastinâpura] and find out what it is that for the sake of the welfare of the Pândavas needs to be done. (33) When their father died, they as young boys together with their mother were in great distress. They were by the king [Dhritarâshthra] taken to his capital, where they are residing since, so I have heard. (34) The King, the son of Ambikâ [see 9.22: 25], was blind and was, under the control of his wicked sons [one hundred of them lead by Duryodhana, 9.22: 26], weak-minded so that the sons of his brother [Pându] certainly were not treated equally by him. (35) Go and find out whether his actions are good or bad at present, so that we with that knowledge can make arrangements for the benefit of Our dear friends.'

(36) After Akrûra fully having instructed with these words, the Fortunate One, Lord Hari, returned to His residence with Uddhava and Sankarshana.'

 



Thus far version three, ......what follows is the second version. 


Chapter 49

Akrûra's Mission in Hastinâpura

(1-2) S'rî S'uka said: 'He [Akrûra] going to Hastinâpura, the city standing out with the glory of the kings of the Pûru-dynasty [see family-tree], saw there the son of Ambikâ [Dhritarâshthra, see 9.22: 25] together with Bhîshma, Vidura and Prithâ [Kuntî], as also Bâhlika and his son [Somadatta], Dronâcârya and Kripâcârya, Karna, Duryodhana, the son of Drona [As'vatthâmâ], the Pândavas and other friends. (3) After the son of Gândinî [Akrûra, see 9.24: 15] appropriately had greeted his relatives and friends inquired they with him for news about their kin and asked he on his turn how they were faring. (4) He stayed there a couple of months to find out what the king, weak of determination with his wicked sons, all did tending to the desires of the mischievous [like Karna]. (5-6) Both Vidura and Kuntî told him everything indeed of the unbecoming, like the administering of poison, that the sons of Dhritarâshthra had done intolerantly being disposed to the influence, skill, strength, bravery, humility and so on of the sons of Prithâ, for whose excellent qualities the citizens had great affection. (7) Prithâ having her [Vrishni-]brother Akrûra before her, approaching him said, as she, with tears in her eyes, remembered her place of birth [Mathurâ]: (8) 'O gentle one, do our parents and brothers, my sisters, nephews and the women of the family as well as my [old girlhood] friends remember us still? (9) Do my brother's son, Krishna, the Supreme Lord, the caring shelter to the devotees and Râma with His lotuspetal eyes, still think of the sons of His fathers sister? (10) And... will He with His words console me, who with young boys deprived of their father in the midst of enemies is lamenting like a doe between wolves? (11) Krishna, o Krishna, o Greatest of Yoga, o Soul and Protector of the Universe, please watch over this surrendered soul who along with her children is drowning in distress, o Govinda! [see also 1.8: 17-43] (12) For mankind in fear of death and rebirth I see no other shelter than the lotusfeet of You, the Controller imparting liberation. (13) My obeisances unto Krishna, the pure Absolute Truth and Supersoul, the Controller of Yoga and Unifier of Consciousness; You whom I've approached for shelter.'

(14) S'rî S'uka said: 'This way did, o King, your very great-grandmother, remembering her relatives and Krishna, the Controller of the Universe, loudly cry over her being unhappy. (15) Akrûra, equal in distress and happiness, and the illustrious Vidura both consoled Kuntî explaining the [divine] origins of her sons births [see family-tree]. (16) When it was about time to leave went he up to the king sitting among his supporters who so impetuously was biased for his sons, in order to speak with him about what in friendship was communicated by his well-wishing relatives [Krishna and Râma]. (17) Akrûra said: 'O dear, beloved son of Vicitravîrya [9.22: 21-25], you to the greater glory of the Kurus have, with your bother Pându having passed away, now assumed the throne. (18) To the dharma protecting the earth and the citizens will you, delighting by good character, achieve perfection and renown remaining equally disposed to your relatives! (19) Acting to the contrary however will you, being condemned in this world, land in darkness; so therefore remain equipoised toward the Pândavas and the ones born from you. (20) For whomever is there no enduring association with anyone in this world, o King, not even with one's own body; so what to say about a wife, children and so on? (21) One is born alone and alone one also meets one's end, and alone one enjoys one's merit as surely also one's demerit. (22) As an unintelligent person in need of support is by others in disguise [as relatives] the wealth stolen that was acquired against the dharma, just like to an aquatic the water [the territory, is occupied by its own offspring]. (23) Indulging against the dharma, thinking uneducated the things one feeds on to be one's own, is he in his purpose frustrated by them in loss of his life-air, wealth, children and others [see 4.31 6.15: 21-23 and 7.15]. (24) By them abandoned taking the load upon him, not properly knowing the purpose of life enters he with his goals unfulfilled blind to his own religious duty indifferent the deepest darkness [see also 3.30; 5: 26; 6.1: 40]. (25) Therefore, with seeing this world, o King, as a dream, as something magical, as a thing of mind, bring the mind with intelligence under control and become equal and peaceful, prabhu.'

(26) Dhritarâshthra said: 'As you speak these words so auspicious, o charity master, can I, as a mortal, never get enough; they are like the nectar of immortality! (27) However pleasing though, o gentle one, are they, like lightening in a cloud, not fixed in my heart which is unsteady, with me being prejudiced by the affection for my sons. (28) What way would there ever be for a person to escape from what is ordained by the Controller, who to diminish the burden of the earth has descended in the Yadu-family? [see B.G. 9: 8] (29) He whose path is inconceivable, creates this universe by His own creative energy, distributes the modes and enters into it; unto Him, unfathomable in the purport of His pastimes, the Supreme Controller from whom we find liberation from the cycle of birth and death, my obeisances.'

(30) S'rî S'uka said: 'Thus convincing himself of the mentality of the king, was Akrûra by his well-wishers permitted to leave and went he back again to the city of the Yadus. (31) To the purpose for which he was sent, reported he to Râma and Krishna what the position was that Dhritarâshthra had taken in relation to the Pândavas, o descendant of Kuru.'

 

Chapter 50

Krishna Uses Jarâsandha and Establishes the City of Dvârakâ

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'Asti and Prâpti, the two queens of Kamsa, o hero of the Bhâratas, unhappy that their husband had been killed, went distressed to their father's house. (2) Their father, the king of Magadha named Jarâsandha [see also 1.15: 9, 9.22: 8, 10.2: 1-2, 10.36: 36], they told all about the cause of their widowhood. (3) He hearing those bad tidings, full of sorrow and indignation o King, embarked upon the extreme endeavor of ridding the earth of the Yâdavas. (4) With twenty-three akshauhinîs amassed he around Mathurâ to besiege the royal capital of the Yadus on all sides. (5-6) When Krishna, the Supreme Lord Hari, saw how by his force, like an ocean having overflowed its boundaries, His city lay under siege and His subjects were confounded of fear, considered He as the Ultimate Cause in a Human Form what to the purpose of His descend into this world would be right to the time and place: (7-8) 'For sure I will annihilate his army, this burden on earth gathered by the king of Magadha in which he brought together all who subservient assumed leadership and now can be counted in akshauhinîs of infantry, cavalry, chariotry and elephantry; Jarâsandha however, I should spare so that he again will try to assemble an army. (9) This is the purpose of My descend: that from this earth the burden is removed, that the saintly are fully protected and that those who wage in opposition are killed. (10) Also other bodies are by Me assumed for the protection of the dharma as soon as after a certain period of time injustice predominates [see also 2.7 and B.G. 4: 7].'

(11) While meditating in this manner appeared the very instant from the sky [from Vaikunthha] two chariots with an effulgence like the sun complete with drivers and equipment. (12) So did also on their own accord the Lord His weapons ancient and divine, and seeing them said the Lord of the Senses to Sankarshana: (13-14) 'Please take notice, o Respected One, of this imminent danger for the Yadus who are protected by You Prabhu, and of this chariot that has arrived with Your favorite weapons. For this purpose indeed have We been born: to act o Lord, to the benefit of the saintly; so please remove now the burden of these twenty-three armies from this earth.'

(15) Thus inviting Him did the two descendants of Das'ârha, in armor resplendent with their weapons, depart from the city in their chariots accompanied by a very small contingent. (16) As the Supreme Personality with Dâruka at the reins appeared, blew He His conch shell which caused the hearts of the enemy soldiers to tremble in terror. (17) Jarâsandha looked at the two of Them and said: 'Krishna You worst of persons, I do not desire to contest with You, a boy only, hiding in shame! With a fool like You I won't fight, get lost You murderer of relatives! (18) And if You, Râma, have the guts to fight, then muster the courage; either You drop Your body cut by my arrows and go to heaven or You kill me!'

(19) The Supreme Lord said: 'Truly, heroes don't have to vaunt, they simply show their prowess; how can We take the words serious, o King, of a man who with his death impending is delirious?'

(20) S'rî S'uka said: 'The son of Jarâ, with his gigantic number of mighty forces then marched forward to the two descendants of Madhu, who were then surrounded by the soldiers, chariots, flags, horses and charioteers like the wind covers the sun with clouds or a fire with dust. (21) When Hari's and Râma's two chariot banners marked by the palm tree and Garuda could not be seen anymore in the battle, did the women of the city positioned in the watchtowers, palaces and gateways, swoon stricken by grief. (22) When the Lord saw how His army was harassed by the savage clouds of arrows the enemy forces repeatedly rained upon Them, twanged He who is worshiped by Sura and Asura, S'ârnga, His most excellent bow. (23) From His quiver then fixing, pulling back and releasing floods of sharp arrows, stroke He, like a burning torch whirled around, the chariots, elephants, horses and foot soldiers relentlessly. (24) Elephants fell with their foreheads split open, many a horse of the cavalry and the chariots simultaneously had their necks and flags severed by the arrows and the charioteers, their masters and the foot soldiers had their arms, legs and shoulders cut. (25-28) Of the limbs of the two-legged ones, the elephants and the horses being cut, flowed the blood in hundreds of streams that were filled with arms looking like snakes, people's heads that were like turtles, dead elephants like islands and dead horses like crocodiles. Replete with hands and thighs as fish, human hair like waterweeds, bows like waves and weapons as separate bushes were the chariot wheels like frightening whirlpools and the precious gems and fine jewelry as the stones and gravel. Terrifying to the timid and inspiring the intelligent with joy, stroke Sankarshana, with His unbounded potency, one after the other His furious enemies down with His plow. Those troops supervised by the king of Magadha for destruction, my dear, that were unfathomable, frightening and insurmountably limitless like the ocean, were for the Lords of the Universe, the two sons of Vasudeva, not more than a plaything. (29) It is not at all surprising when He, of Unlimited Qualities, who effects the maintenance, creation and annihilation of the three worlds, subdues an opposing party, but nevertheless is it [in response to philosophers who proclaim His being unconcerned] described as a game of His in imitation of the human ways. (30) The so very strong Jarâsandha, whose army had been destroyed and who, deprived of his chariot, was left with his breath only, was seized by Râma as forcibly as one lion would seize another lion. (31) But, in the process of tying up, with the ropes of Varuna [compare 5.24: 23] and of normal man, him who had killed so many adversaries, was He checked by Govinda for He needed him to serve another purpose.

(32-33) He, honored by heroes, was ashamed to be released by the two Lords of the Universe and thought of performing austerities, but was in his resolve half way home stopped by the rest of the royalty who explained to him in clear terms, in meaningful words as also with practical arguments: 'This being defeated by the Yadus has accrued because of your own karmic bondage'. (34) The son of Brihadratha with all his soldiers killed and left alone by the Supreme Lord, then arrived depressed back in Magadha.

(35-36) Mukunda with His forces unbroken having crossed the ocean of the armies of His enemy, was showered with flowers by the servants of the three worlds in praise. Being met by the people of Mathurâ, who with their fever allayed felt great joy, was His glory sung by bards, heralds and panegyrists. (37-38) As He entered the city with its sprinkled roads and many a banner, resounded conch shells, kettledrums, drums and horns all together with vinâs, flutes and mridangas [two-sided devotional drums] and chanted the elated citizens loudly vedic verses at the festively decorated gateways. (39) With eyes wide open full of love gazing affectionately covered the women Him with flowergarlands, yogurt, parched rice and sprouts. (40) The countless valuables of the heroes fallen on the battlefield were by the Lord all together presented to the king of the Yadus [Ugrasena]. (41) And so it happened this way seventeen times that the king of Magadha with his akshauhinîs fought the Yadus who were protected by Krishna's military strength. (42) The Vrishnis by the power of Krishna entirely destroyed the king his force: every time his soldiers were dead, was he deserted and went he away again. (43) Just as the eighteenth battle was about to take place appeared a foreign fighter [Kâlayavana] sent by Nârada. (44) Having heard about the Vrishnis arrived he there with three crores of barbarians [mlecchas] and besieged he Mathurâ, as he among the human beings had found no one to match him. (45) Seeing him thought Krishna with Sankarshana His helper: 'Ah, from two sides; a great problem indeed has risen for the Yadus! (46) This Yavana opposing us today is of the same great strength as Jarâsandha, who will also get here either today, tomorrow or the day after tomorrow. (47) While the two of Us are fighting with him will the son of Jarâ, when he comes, kill our relatives or else move them to his own stronghold. (48) Let's therefore today kill the barbarians and build us, for our intimates to settle there, a fortress impenetrable to the two-legged.'

(49) The Supreme Lord thus deliberating arranged for a fortress twelve yojanas [around] within the sea where He had a city [called Dvârakâ or 'many-gated', see also 1: 11] containing all kinds of wonders. (50-53) Within it could the science of the architecture of Tvashthâ [Vis'vakarmâ] be admired who with his expertise constructed the main avenues, courtyards and service roads to the ample plots of land. It contained splendid gardens and parks with the trees and creepers of the godly and gateways made of quartz with upper levels that with turrets of gold touched the sky. The service buildings with silver and brass were decorated with pots of gold, had jeweled rooftops and the houses had floors with precious emeralds. The households occupied by the four varnas of people had temples housing their presiding deities and were constructed with watchtowers; and most beautiful with it were the residences of the Yadu godhead. (54) Lord Indra delivered to the Lord the pârijâta [coral-]tree as also the Sudharmâ-hall ['good law'] situated in which a mortal is not affected by the laws of mortality. (55) Varuna delivered horses swift as the wind that were colored white and exclusively dark-grey; the treasurer of the godly delivered the eight mystic treasures [see nidhi] and each of the local rulers brought in their own opulences. (56) Whatever powers of control the Supreme Lord had given as their own perfections were all offered back to Krishna, now He had come to earth. (57) Krishna after bringing over there by the power of His yoga all His subjects [*], then on the advise of Balarâma, the protector of the citizens, unarmed went out of the city gate, wearing a garland of lotus flowers.'

 Footnote:

 * S'rîla Vis'vanâtha Cakravartî to this quotes the following verses from S'rî Padma Purâna, Uttara-khanda: "In the middle of the night, as the citizens of Mathurâ slept, Lord Janârdana suddenly removed them from that city and placed them in Dvârakâ. When the men awoke, they were all amazed to find themselves, their children and their wives sitting inside palaces made of gold."

 

 

Chapter 51

The Deliverance of Mucukunda

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'Seeing Him coming out [see 50: 57] like the moon rising, most beautiful to behold, with a dark complexion, a yellow silk garment, the S'rîvatsa on His chest, the brilliant Kaustubha gem decorating His neck, His mighty, long four arms and eyes as pink as newly grown lotuses; His always effulgent, clean, joyful smile to His beautiful cheeks, His lotuslike face and the display of His shark-shaped earrings, thought he [Kâlayavana]: 'This person indeed must be Vâsudeva with the S'rîvatsa, the four arms, the lotus-eyes, the wearing of forest-flowers and with the great beauty. From the marks Nârada mentioned can He be no one else, going there without weapons on foot; I'll fight Him without weapons!' The Yavana thus decided, in pursuit wanted to catch Him who had turned His face away and fled, He, who is unattainable even to the mystic yogis. (7) With every step He made seemed He to be within the reach of his hands and after that way having covered a great distance placed He the lord of the Yavanas before a mountain cave. (8) In his pursuit insulting Him with words like 'Fleeing is for You being born in the Yadu-dynasty improper!', could he, whose mischief had not found its end [yet], not get hold of Him. (9) Even though He was insulted this way, entered the Supreme Lord the mountain cave, but when the Yavana followed Him saw he lying there another man. (10) 'And now, bringing me this long distance is He lying down here like a saint!' and thus erroneously thinking him to be Acyuta, struck he him full force with his foot. (11) The man, waking up after a long period of sleep, slowly opened his eyes and, looking about in every direction, saw him standing beside him. (12) O descendant of Bharata he as such, was by the glance, the angered man cast on him, in a moment burnt to ashes by a fire that generated from within his own body [*].'

(13) The honorable king [Parîkchit] said: 'Who precisely was that person, o brahmin, of which family was he and of what powers; why had he retreated into the cave to sleep and of whose seed was he born that destroyer of the Yavana?'

(14) S'rî S'uka said: 'He is known as Mucukunda. He was born in the Ikshvâku dynasty as a son of Mândhâtâ [see 9.6: 38 and 9.7]. He is a great personality devoted to the brahminical and someone true to his vow in battle. (15) He, on the request of the godly headed by Indra who were terrified because of the Asuras, was for a long time of service to assure them their protection. (16) They, obtaining Guha ['from the cave'; Skanda or Kârttikeya] as their protector of heaven, then said to Mucukunda: 'O King, please desist from the trouble your good self has to protect us. (17) You forgetting all your personal desires have, with abandoning a kingdom in the world of man, for our protection removed those [asura] thorns, o hero. (18) Your children, your queens and your other relatives, ministers, advisors and subjects are not alive now, are not of this time anymore; time swept them away. (19) Time, more powerful than the powerful, is the Supreme Inexhaustible Lord in Control who, playing a game of herdsman and flock, sets the mortal beings in motion. (20) All good fortune to you, choose today any benediction from us except for the one of liberation, for only the Supreme Inexhaustible Lord S'rî Vishnu is capable of that.'

(21) He, for his great fame thus addressed by the demigods, respectfully saluted them and laid himself down in a cave to enjoy the sleep the gods had granted him [**]. (22) After the barbarian was turned into ashes revealed the Supreme Lord, the great hero of the Sâtvatas, Himself to the wise Mucukunda. (23-26) Looking at Him, He who was as dark as a cloud, in a yellow, silken garment, the S'rîvatsa on His chest, the brilliant Kaustubha gem glowing, the four arms and the beautifying Vaijayantî garland; His attractive, calm face and glittering shark-shaped earrings, His affectionate smile appealing to all mankind, His glance, His youthful handsome form, His noble gait and His fire that was like that of a lion - was he, as highly intelligent as he was, overwhelmed by His effulgence, which was a splendor unassailable indeed, and posed he in doubt hesitantly a question. (27) Sr'î Mucukunda said: 'Who are You to join with me in the wilderness in a mountain cave, with Your feet like the petals of a lotus walking the thorny ground? (28) Maybe You're the Supreme Lord, the origin of all empowered beings, or else the god of fire, the sun-god, the moon-god, the king of heaven or perhaps a ruler from another planet? (29) I think You're the God of the three personalities of the demigods, the Greatest, because You dispel the darkness of the cave [the 'heart'] like a lamp with its light. (30) O Most Eminent Among Man, if You like, if You can, veraciously describe for us eager to hear, Your birth, activities and lineage. (31) We from our side, o tiger among men, are descendants of Ikshvâku, a family of kshatriyas. And I, born from the son of Yuvanâs'va, am called Mucukunda o Lord. (32) Because I remained awake for a long time was I, fatigued in my senses and overwhelmed by sleep, to my comfort lying in this solitary place and have I now been awakened by someone. (33) That person turned to ashes indeed out of his own sinful conduct only, and Your good Self so glorious, o Chastiser of Enemies, I saw following immediately thereafter. (34) Because of Your unbearable effulgence are we, diminished in our faculties, not able to behold You, o most Gracious One; You are to be honored by all embodied beings!'

(35) Thus addressed by the king replied the Supreme Lord and Origin of All Creation, smiling broadly, with words deep as the rumbling of clouds. (36) The Supreme Lord said: 'My births, activities and names are there by the thousands, My dearest, limitless as they are they cannot even be enumerated by Me! (37) Some time, after many lives, one might count the particles of dust on earth, but never ever so My many qualities, activities, names and births. (38) Not even the greatest sages counting My births and activities taking place to the three of time [past, present, future], o King, can reach the end of them [compare 8.5: 6 and 8.23: 29]. (39-40) Nonetheless, o friend, just hear from Me about the current one, this Speaker. In the past I was beseeched by Lord Brahmâ [see 3.9 and also 10.14] to secure the dharma and destroy the demons who are a burden to the earth, and so I descended into the Yadu dynasty in the home of Vasudeva and do the people as such call Me Vâsudeva, the son of Vasudeva. (41) Kâlanemi I killed [see 10.8: 56], Kamsa [10.44], Pralamba [10.18] and others envious of the virtuous, and this Yavana, o King was burned by your scorching glance. (42) I, that very same person caring for the devotees, approached this cave for the sake of favoring you, because you in the past have often prayed for it. (43) Tell Me what you want Me to bless you with, o saintly King, I will give you all that you desire; any person who has satisfied Me, will never again need to lament.'

(44) S'rî S'uka said: 'Thus being addressed bowing down to Him spoke Mucukunda remembering the words of Garga [***], being filled with joy knowing He was Nârâyana the [original] Godhead. (45) S'rî Mucukunda said: 'This person, not of worship for You, can, bewildered by Your deluding potency mâyâ o Lord, not see his own benefit when he, wishing for happiness, gets cheated as a family man - or also as a woman - who being entangled goes for things that bring misery. (46) The person who somehow or other attaining to what is rarely obtained in this world - a human form and not the paws, but not being of worship doesn't try to go, o sinless one, for Your lotuslike feet, has, impure in his mentality, like an animal fallen in the blind well of his home. (47) O Unconquerable One, wasting my time on this, I built a kingdom and opulence that now are all gone; intoxicated as an earthly ruler who mistakes the mortal frame for himself, suffered I endless anxieties getting attached to children, wives, riches and land. (48) Minding this body, which is a confinement like a pot or a wall, I thus thought myself to be a god among man, surrounded as I was by chariots, elephants, horses, infantry and generals with whom I traveled around on this earth without seriously regarding You in my great pride. (49) Forgetful about what needs to be done, hankering for sense objects endlessly ruminating with an ever growing greed, is one suddenly confronted with You, the one who does mind; You are like what death is to a mouse in front of a hungry snake that licks its fangs. (50) Previously named 'the king' riding chariots furnished with gold or fierce elephants is that same one unavoidably with the Time of Your body called 'feces', 'worms' and 'ashes' [see also 16.4: 2-6]. (51) Full circle having conquered the directions with no opposition to fear and being seated on a throne and praised by kings alike is the person in his home like a pet led about, sexually borrowing his happiness from women, o Lord. (52) In that enviously reaching for more, performs he with penance his duties in strictly avoiding pleasures, but thinking of himself as 'I the greater sovereign' can he, whose urges are so pronounced, not attain happiness. (53) When it happens that the wandering person reaches the end of his material existence will at that time o Infallible One, the association of the good and honest [the sat-sanga] be found after which next the devotion is born for Him who for the virtuous is the only goal as the Lord of the Higher [cause] and Lower [effects]. (54) I think o Lord that, with the spontaneous removal of the attachment to my kingdom, You've been merciful with me: it is that for which the saintly rulers of endless stretches of land pray when, wishing the solitude, they enter the forest. (55) I do not desire anything else but to be of service at Your feet that to those not desiring a material life are the object of desire, the boon sought, o Almighty one; what faithful man of worship for You, the Bestower of the Path of Emancipation, o Lord, would as a boon choose for that which causes his bondage? (56) Therefore o Lord, entirely putting aside the worldly blessings from which one is entangled in the modes of passion, ignorance and goodness, am I approaching You, the Original Person of Pure Knowledge free from mundane designations who is nondual and supreme above the modes. (57) For long was I full of remorse distressed in the world being tormented by disturbances; with my six enemies [the senses and the mind] never satisfied there was no way to find peace o Bestower of the Shelter, please o Lord protect me who facing these dangers, o Supreme Soul, approached Your lotusfeet, the truth free from sorrow ridding of fear.'

(58) The Supreme Lord said: 'O great King, emperor of all, even though being tempted to ask for benedictions were you, capable of mind, impeccable in not being spoiled by desires. (59) Please know that the fact that you were tempted with benedictions was to prove your freedom from bewilderment; never is the exclusive[-ly to Me devoted] intelligence of the bhaktas diverted by material blessings. (60) With those who in not being devoted to Me are occupying themselves with breathing exercises and such, is, since they did not eliminate the traces of material desire [the vâsanâs], o King, observed that again their minds awaken [to sense-gratification]. (61) Wander this earth as you like and may, with your mind fixed on Me, there for you thus always be the devotion for Me that does not fail. (62) Following the dharma of the ruling class you've killed living beings when you were hunting and with other actions; that sin you should uproot completely in fully being focussed in penances in which you seek My shelter. (63) In your birth immediately hereafter o King, will you, becoming a supreme well-wisher to all living beings, be a fine brahmin going for Me only [see also B.G. 5: 29].'

Footnotes:

* Mucukunda, the man asleep, as stated hereafter fought for a long time on behalf of the demigods and finally took as his benediction the right to sleep undisturbed. The paramparâ by S'rîla Vis'vanâtha Cakravartî quotes the Hari-vams'a that explains he secured the further benediction of being able to destroy anyone who disturbed his sleep. He further elucidates that Mucukunda made this rather morbid request to scare Lord Indra, who, so Mucukunda thought, might otherwise wake him up repeatedly to request his help in fighting Indra's cosmic enemies. Indra's consent to Mucukunda's request is described in the S'rî Vishnu Purâna as follows: "The demigods declared, 'Whoever awakens you from sleep will suddenly be burnt to ashes by a fire generated from his own body.' "  

** S'rîla Bhaktisiddhânta Sarasvatî Thhâkura gives the following lines from an alternate reading of this chapter. These lines are to be inserted between the two halves of this verse:

nidrâm eva tato vavre
sa râjâ s'rama-karshitah
yah kas'cin mama nidrâyâ
bhangam kuryâd surottamâh
sa hi bhasmî-bhaved âs'u
tathoktas' ca surais tadâ
svâpam yâtam yo madhye tu
bodhayet tvâm acetanah
sa tvayâ drishtha-mâtras tu
bhasmî-bhavatu tat-kshanât

"The King, exhausted by his labor, then chose sleep as his benediction. He further stated, 'O best of the demigods, may whoever disturbs my sleep be immediately burned to ashes.' The demigods replied, 'So be it,' and told him, 'That insensitive person who wakes you in the middle of your sleep will immediately turn to ashes simply by your seeing him."

*** The paramparâ states: 'S'rîla S'rîdhara Svâmî informs us that Mucukunda was aware of the prediction of the ancient sage Garga that in the twenty-eighth millennium the Supreme Lord would descend. According to Âcârya Vis'vanâtha, Garga Muni further informed Mucukunda that he would personally see the Lord. Now it was all happening.'  

 

 

Chapter 52

The Lords Leap from a Mountain and Rukminî's Message to Lord Krishna

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'In this manner, my dear, being graced by Krishna circumambulated the descendant of Ikshvâku Him bowing down and left he through the mouth of the cave. (2) Noticing that the human beings, the animals, plants and trees were all in a poor condition concluded he that Kali-yuga had arrived and went he in the northern direction [compare 1.15: 44]. (3) With faith in the process of penance was he, seriously detached from a materially motivated association with people, freed from doubts and thus having fixed his mind upon Krishna he reached the mountain Gandhamâdana ['the nice smell']. (4) Reaching Badarikâs'rama [see e.g. 3.4: 4; 4.12: 16; 5.4: 5; 7.11: 6], the residence of Nara-Nârâyana, worshiped he, with respecting all duality, the Lord from the peace he had found with his austerity.

(5) The Supreme Lord turned back to His city Mathurâ that was surrounded by the Yavanas and brought, after killing the barbarian army, their riches to Dvârakâ. (6) As Acyuta by oxen and men was engaged in taking the wealth, arrived there Jarâsandha leading twenty-three armies. (7) Seeing the powerful waves of soldiers of the enemy armies ran the two Mâdhavas, adopting a human course, o King, quickly away. (8) Abandoning the load of goods acting like cowards who are afraid, covered They, actually not afraid at all, with Their lotuspetal feet many yojanas. (9) Seeing the Two fleeing laughed the mighty ruler of Mâghada loudly and pursued he with charioteers and soldiers the Lords, not being quite aware of Their special nature. (10) Having put Their powers to a test full speed having run a long distance, climbed They a very high mountain known as Pravarshana ['the rainy one'] where the mighty one [Indra] is always showering rains. (11) Knowing that They were hiding on the mountain, but not exactly where o King, set he, with firewood igniting fires on all sides, the mountain ablaze. (12) Quickly leaping down from it being eleven yojanas high and burning on all sides, fell They to the ground. (13) Not being seen by Their opponent or his helpers returned the two finest Yadus to Their city which had the ocean as its moat, o King. (14) The king of the Magadhas on his part mistakenly thought that Balarâma and Kes'ava had burned in the fire and went to Magadha pulling back his huge force. (15) As previously stated gave the opulent sovereign of Ânarta, named Raivata, on the order of Brahmâ Balarâma his daughter Raivatî in marriage [9.3: 33-36]. (16-17) Govinda the Supreme Lord Himself, married, o hero among the Kurus, Vaidarbhî [Rukminî] the daughter of Bhîshmaka, to her own choice. She was a plenary portion of the goddess of fortune. By force overruling S'âlva and other kings in support of S'is'upâla, accomplished He this [by stealing her away] before the eyes of all the people, just like the son of Târkshya [Garuda, stole] the nectar of heaven.'

(18) The honorable king said: 'In the manner of a Râkshasa [by kidnapping thus], so I heard, married the Supreme Lord thus Rukminî, the daughter of Bhîshmaka with the charming face. (19) O lord, I'd like to hear about how Krishna stole away the bride, with His immeasurable potency defeating such kings as Jarasândha and S'âlva. (20) O brahmin! Who can ever all understand what is said and get enough of hearing about the always new [see 10.45: 48] propitious, delightful topics of Krishna which remove the contamination of the world?'

(21) The son of Vyâsa said: 'There was a king named Bhîshmaka, the great ruler of Vidarbha, of whom there were five sons and one daughter with an exceptionally pretty face. (22) Rukmî was the first born son, followed by Rukmaratha, Rukmabâhu, Rukmakes'a and Rukmamâlî; Rukminî their sister was of a saintly character [rukma means: 'what is bright or radiant']. (23) She, from hearing Mukunda's beauty, prowess, character and opulences being sung by those who came to her family home, deemed Him a suitable husband. (24) Krishna, finding her as a repository of intelligence, auspicious marks, magnanimity, beauty, good behavior and other qualities a suitable wife, then took the decision to marry her. (25) Even though the family wanted to give the sister to Krishna o King, was this by Rukmî, who hated Krishna, prevented; he thought more of S'is'upâla. (26) The princess of Vidarbha with her dark eyes unhappy with that knowledge, pained her mind and quickly sent a certain dependable brahmin to Krishna. (27) He, arriving at Dvârakâ, brought inside by the gatekeepers saw the Original Person seated on a golden throne. (28) The Lord Good to the Brahmins seeing him got down from His throne, seated him and performed worship the way the residents of heaven worship Him. (29) With him having eaten and rested approached the Goal of the Saintly Devotees him in order to personally give him a massage for his feet and asked He him patiently: (30) 'My best, are the religious practices sanctioned by your first-class, twiceborn seniors, proceeding without too much difficulty and are you always happy within? (31) When a brahmin satisfied carries on with whatever [comes his way], not falling short in his religious duty, will those [practices] for him every way be the cow of plenty. (32) Dissatisfied will he, even though he is the master of the godly, again and again end up in various worlds; but satisfied will he, even though destitute, rest with all his limbs free from pain and fever. (33) To the learned who are satisfied with their progress [in self-realization] I bow My head again and again because they, void of false ego, are of the saintly and of all living beings, peaceful as they are the best well-wishers [see also B.G. 2: 71, 12: 13-14]. (34) Are you faring well with what the king all does, o brahmin? For the king whose subjects are happy to live protected in his state is very dear to Me. (35) From where, crossing the [ocean of] troubles, did you arrive here and for what purpose; please tell Us everything, if its not a secret; what is it We may do for you?'

(36) With the Supreme Being, who for the sake of His pastimes assumes His bodies, thus asking these questions, related the brahmin everything to Him: (37) 'S'rî Rukminî has said: 'O Most Beautiful One of all the Worlds, hearing that for all those who hear about Your qualities You, entering through the openings of their ears, remove the distress of their bodies and that they who have eyes to see the beauty of You, obtain the complete fulfillment of all desires, have I without shame installed You in my mind! (38) Who, o Mukunda, is Your equal in aristocratic background, character, beauty, knowledge, youth, property and influence? What sober and marriageable girl of a good family would, coming of age, not choose for her husband You, o lion among men, who are so delightful to the minds of all mankind? (39) Therefore have I chosen Your good Self, dear Lord, for my husband and offer I myself as a wife to You, o Omnipotent One, please accept me; may the king of Cedi [S'is'upâla] never, like a jackal away with what belongs to the king of the animals, touch what is allotted to the hero. (40) Let with the Supreme Lord, the Highest Controller sufficiently worshiped by means of pious works, sacrifices, charity, observances, vows, honoring the gods, the gurus and the learned and other activities, the elder brother of Gada [9.24: 46] come and take my hand and not the son of Damaghosha or others like him. (41) The day before the marriage takes place You must come to Vidarbha, o Invincible One, in secret surrounded by Your officers to crush fighting the armed resistance of the kings of Caidya and Magadha and take me in marriage in the râkshasa style as the reward for Your valor. (42) How to carry me, moving within my quarters, away without killing my relatives, You might say; let me tell You how to: on the day before is there for the presiding deity of the family a large ceremonial procession outside in which the new bride approaches the goddess Girijâ [Ambikâ in her temple]. (43) Great souls, like the husband of Ûma [S'iva], in order to overcome their own ignorance hanker to bathe in the dust of Your lotusfeet; when I, o Lotus-eyed One, cannot obtain Your mercy I ought to give up my life in being weakened by vows, so that I [finally] obtain You after a hundred births more.' (44) [The brahmin ended with:] This is the confidential message brought by me, o Lord of the Yadus, so please consider what immediately following up on this matter needs to be done.'  

     

Chapter 53

Krishna Kidnaps Rukminî

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'The Descendant of Yadu [Krishna] at that moment hearing the confidential message of the princess of Vidarbha, took the hand of the messenger into His and said smiling the following. (2) The Supreme Lord said: 'I also am the same way in My mind fixed on her and cannot sleep at night; I know that Rukmî in his enmity is against Me marrying her. (3) I'll bring her, that indisputable beauty deeming Me the best, over here and crush in battle that half-breed royalty, the way one ignites a fire from firewood!'

(4) S'rî S'uka said: 'And known with the exact time of Rukminî's marriage told Madhusûdana His charioteer: 'Dâruka, immediately get the chariot ready'. (5) He accordingly bringing the chariot with the horses named S'aibya, Sugrîva, Meghapushpa and Balâhaka [*], next stood before Him with folded palms. (6) S'auri together with the brahmin mounting His chariot drove swiftly with His horses in a single night to the Vidarbha kingdom. (7) King Bhîshmaka who in his affection answered to the wishes of his son [Rukmî] was prepared to give his daughter away to S'is'upâla and saw to it that the required duties were performed. (8-9) The city thoroughly cleansed and with its avenues, streets and intersections abundantly sprinkled with water, was decorated with banners on flagpoles and with archways. With their homes aromatic of aguru arrayed the women and men of the city in spotless clothing, hung with jewels, fragrant and decorated with flowers and other ornaments. (10) To the rules correctly worshiping the forefathers and the demigods, o King, and feeding the scholars as was proper, had he [Bhîshmaka] chanted auspicious mantras. (11) The bride properly bathed and with her teeth washed put on her auspicious marriage-thread, as also a brand-new set of clothes and adorned herself with the most excellent jewels. (12) For the protection of the bride were, by the best of the twiceborn, mantras chanted from the Sâma, Rig and Yajur Veda and poured the priest expert in the Atharva mantras justly oblations of ghee for the peace of the ruling planets. (13) As the best of the ones known with the vidhi donated the king gold, silver, clothing and sesame seeds mixed with raw sugar to the brahmins. (14) The same way arranged the lord of Cedi, king Damaghosha, for his son [the bridegroom] that by the knowers of the mantras everything was done that was conducive to his prosperity. (15) He traveled to Kundina [Bhîshmaka's capital] accompanied by hordes of elephants dripping of the mada and arrays of golden chariots decorated with garlands and crowded by armies of foot soldiers and horses. (16) The master of Vidarbha half way meeting him with pleasure arranged for him honorably a specially constructed place to stay. (17) S'âlva, Jarâsandha, Dantavakra and Vidûratha taking to the side of S'is'upâla, came along with Paundraka and thousands of others. (18-19) Those inimical towards Krishna and Râma were thus prepared: 'In order to secure the bride for S'is'upâla will we join to fight Him together, should Krishna accompanied by Râma and other Yadus come to steal her', and thus decided had all the kings come complete with a contingent of troops.

(20-21) When Lord Balarâma heard of these hostile preparations of the kings and that Krishna had set off alone to steal the bride, went He, fearing a fight, filled with love for His brother swiftly to Kundina together with a mighty force of elephants, horses, chariots and soldiers on foot. (22) The daughter of Bhîshmaka with her lovely hips awaiting the arrival of Krishna, not seeing the brahmin return, then wondered: (23) 'Alas, three yamas [nine hours] are left before I, without the taste of happiness, will marry; the Lotus-eyed One does not come and I don't know for what reason, nor has as yet the carrier of my message returned. (24) Perhaps sees the One Faultless in Mind and Body, prepared as He for sure originally is, something contemptible in me, not having come to take my hand. (25) How unfortunate, the creator is not favorably disposed towards me, nor is the great Lord S'iva, or maybe has Devî his consort, [known as] Gaurî, Rudrânî, Girijâ or Satî turned against me.'

(26) Ruminating thus did the young girl, whose mind had been stolen by Krishna, close her eyes brimming with tears, knowing the time [that was left]. (27) As the bride was thus awaiting Govinda's arrival, o King, twitched her left thigh, arm and eye foretelling something desirable. (28) Just then came that purest of the twiceborn to the command of Krishna, to see the divine daughter of the king staying in the inner chambers of the palace. (29) Noticing his joyful face and the relaxed movements of his body did she, as an expert in the signs, inquire with a pure smile. (30) He told her of the arrival of that Child of the Yadus and related the words He had said in assurance of Him getting married to her. (31) Concluding that He had arrived, gladdened the mind of Vaidarbhî, upon which she knew no other answer than to bow down to the dear brahmin. (32) Hearing that He, eager to witness his daughter's marriage, had arrived came he [king Bhîshmaka] with the sounds of instruments and with abundant offerings to welcome Râma and Krishna. (33) As prescribed performed he worship with desirables as honey-milk [madhu-parka] and brought he new clothes. (34) Generously arranging for an opulent place to stay afforded he Them, together with their soldiers and associates, proper hospitality. (35) Thus was he according each his power, age, strength and wealth with all that was wanted of respect for the kings who had assembled. (36) The residents of Vidarbha-pura hearing that Krishna had come, all came to drink in His lotus face with the cupped palms of their eyes [and said]: (37) 'He, whose body is just as flawless, alone deserves Rukminî as a wife, and no one else; He's the most suitable husband for princess Bhaishmî! (38) May, with whatever of all our good deeds, the Creator of the Three Worlds be as merciful, that Acyuta takes the hand of Rukminî.'

(39) Thus overflowing with love spoke the citizens in fascination and left the bride protected by guards the inner palace for the temple of Ambikâ [see also 10.52: 42]. (40-41) And she, going there on foot to see the lotuspetal feet of Bhavânî, kept, totally absorbed in mediating Krishna's lotusfeet, silent in de midst of her mothers and female companions. Guarded by the valiant, armed soldiers of the king, who stood prepared with their weapons raised, were cymbals and mridangas, conch shells, horns and other wind instruments played. (42-43) Accompanying the bride were there the wives of the twice-born, well ornamented, thousands of prominent chosen ones with various items of worship and presents, flowergarlands, fragrances, clothing and jewelry, as also singers singing and offering prayers, musicians and bards, chroniclers and heralds. (44) Reaching the temple of the goddess washed she her feet and lotuslike hands, sipped she water for purification and entered she sanctified and peaceful the place where Ambikâ resided. (45) The so very young girl was by the elderly wives of the brahmins, who were well acquainted with the injunctions, led in offering respects to Bhavânî who was here together with her consort Lord Bhava [S'iva].: (46) 'I along with your children repeatedly offer my obeisances to you o Ambikâ, please allow Krishna, the Supreme Lord, to be my husband.'

(47-48) With various offerings and gifts of water, fragrant substances, whole grains, incense, clothing, garlands, necklaces, ornaments and an array of lamps, performed each of the brahmin ladies worship equipped with these articles as also with savories, cakes, prepared betel nut, sacred threads, fruits and sugar cane. (49) After they gave her what remained of the offering as also their blessings, bowed the bride down to them and to the deity and accepted she the remnants. (50) Then, ending her vow of silence, left she the temple of Ambikâ, with her hand, that was beautified by a jeweled ring, holding on to a maidservant. (51-55) As if she were the illusory potency [Mâyâdevî, zie ook 8.12: 38-40; 10.2***] of the Lord herself that even bewilders the sober ones, entranced she the entire gathering of the respectable heroes with the vision of her wearing the earrings that decorated the virginal beauty of her face, with her jewel-studded belt around her hips, her budding breasts, her eyes shy to the locks of her hair, her pure smile and teeth reddened by the glow from her bimba lips, her jasmine-bud feet walking, her gait gracious as a royal swan and the tinkling of her skillfully fashioned anklebells beautifying [her feet] with their effulgence. The kings all rose to their feet upon the sight of her broad smiles, shyness and mindboggling glances that was a lust to them of which being distressed their hearts were torn apart and their weapons dropped to the ground. Sitting on their horses, elephants and chariots fell they, loosing their grip, down to the ground as she on the pretext of the procession was offering her beauty to Lord Hari. Slowly walking, put she one before the other the two whorls of her lotus flower feet, meanwhile eagerly expecting the arrival of the Supreme Personality. Throwing aside her hair with the nails of her hand spotted she, coyly looking from the corners of her eyes at those present, that instant Acyuta. Right before the eyes of His enemies seized Krishna the king's daughter who stood prepared to mount the chariot. (56) Lifting her onto His chariot marked with [the flag of] Garuda drove He back the circle of kings and left He, with Balarâma in front, from there as slowly as a lion would remove his prey from the midst of jackals. (57) The adversaries headed by Jarâsandha, conceited as they were, could with their honor ruined not bear the defeat: 'Damn us archers, with those cowherds stealing the honor from us lions, like they are a bunch of puny animals!'

Footnote:

* S'rîla Vis'vanâtha Cakravartî quotes the following text of the Padma Purâna describing Lord Krishna's chariot horses: "S'aibya was green like a parrot's wings, Sugrîva yellow-gold, Meghapushpa the color of a cloud, and Balâhaka whitish."  

 

 Chapter 54

Rukmî's Defeat and Krishna Married

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'They all thus [realizing their being robbed] most angry in armor mounted their means of transport and came, each surrounded by his own troops, after them, holding their bows. (2) When the Yâdava army spotted them in their pursuit, held the officers to face them, o King, and twanged they their bows. (3) From horseback, elephant shoulders and from the chariot seats released those [enemy] masters of arms clouds of arrows that rained like water does over the mountains. (4) When the slender-waisted girl saw the army of her Lord covered by heavy rains of arrows looked she embarrassed at His face with eyes full of fear. (5) The Supreme Lord laughing said: 'don't be afraid, o beautiful eyes, right now will this enemy force be destroyed by your troops'. (6) The heroes Gada [Krishna's younger half-brother], Sankarshana and the others could not tolerate the display of power of the enemy forces and thus struck they with arrows of iron down the horses, elephants and chariots. (7) Of those riding the chariots, the horses and the elephants fell by the thousands the heads to the ground complete with earrings, helmets and turbans. (8) There were the heads of humans, horses, donkeys, mules, elephants and camels as well as [loose] hands with swords, clubs and bows, hands without fingers, thighs and legs. (9) The kings headed by Jarâsandha who eager for the victory saw their armies annihilated by the Vrishnis, then left discouraged. (10) They approached and addressed S'is'upâla who with the wife he had in mind being stolen away, dispirited was perturbed with a dried up face with all its color gone. (11) [Jarâsandha said:] 'O Sir, tiger among men, please give up this dark state of mind, for the embodied ones is there to the wanted and unwanted no permanence to be found. (12) As a woman made of wood dances to the desire of a puppeteer is the same way this world, concerned with joy and sorrow, controlled by its Controller. (13) I myself with twenty-three armies lost seventeen times over in battles with S'auri [Krishna] and only one I won. (14) Nonetheless do I never lament or rejoice, knowing that the world is driven by time and fate combined. (15) Even now are we all, leaders of the leaders of heroes, defeated by the meager entourage of Yadus under the protection of Krishna. (16) Now, with our enemies having conquered, works the time in their favor but then again shall we conquer when the times have changed to our favor.'

(17) S'rî S'uka said: 'Thus persuaded by his friends went S'is'upâla back to his city and so did also each of the surviving kings who followed him return to his own place. (18) The mighty Rukmî however, who hating Krishna couldn't bear the fact that his sister got married in the râkshasa style, pursued Krishna surrounded by an entire akshauhinî. (19-20) Rukmî, mighty armed with his bow and armor, most angrily full of resentment swore to all the kings listening: 'Let me tell you this in truth: I will not return to Kundina without having killed Krishna in battle and having retreived Rukminî'. (21) Thus speaking climbed he his chariot and told he his charioteer: 'Quickly, drive the horses to where Krishna is, there must be a fight between Him and me. (22) Today will I, with my sharp arrows, baffle the madness of that most wicked Cowherd who had the temerity to violently abduct my sister!' 

(23) Thus foolishly vaunting not realizing what Krishna was all capable of, shouted he next with a single chariot coming forward at Krishna: 'Stand and fight!' (24) Drawing his bow he most firmly struck Krishna [His chariot] with three arrows and said: 'Wait a minute, You corrupter of the Yadu-dynasty! (25) Wherever You might go having stolen my sister like being a crow who steals the sacrificial butter, I'll put an end today to Your false pride, You foolish cheater, You devious fighter!! (26) If You want my arrows not to kill You, lay off and release the girl', but Krishna with a smile struck Rukmî with six arrows that broke his bow. (27) With Krishna firing eight arrows at his four horses, with two at his charioteer and with three at his flagpole, took he up another bow and struck he Krishna with five. (28) Even though He was struck by all of these arrows broke Krishna, the Infallible One, his bow again just as another one that he picked up. (29) The spiked bludgeon, the trident, the lance, the shield and sword, the pike, the javelin or whatever weapon he took up were all by Him, the Lord, broken. (30) Then leaping from his chariot sword in hand ran he, with the intent to kill Krishna, forward as furious as a bird in the wind. (31) With His arrows breaking to pieces the sword and shield of His attacker, took He, prepared to kill Rukmî, up His own sharp sword. (32) Seeing that He wanted to kill her brother fell the saintly Rukminî beset in fear at the feet of her husband and pleaded she piteously. 

(33) S'rî Rukminî said: 'O Controller of Yoga, o Inscrutable Soul, o God of Gods, o Master of the Universe, o Auspicious One, please don't kill my brother, o Mighty-armed One.' 

(34) S'rî S'uka said: 'With His feet held by her whose limbs were trembling in total fear, with her mouth dry of sorrow, her throat choked and her golden necklace disheveled in her agitation, desisted He in compassion. (35) With a strip of cloth tying him up, shaved He the evildoer, making a mess of him leaving him but some of his hair and mustache. Meanwhile crushed the extraordinary army of the Yadu heroes their opponents the way elephants crush a lotus flower [compare 1.7]. (36) Getting close to where Krishna was found they there Rukmî in a sorry condition as good as dead. The almighty Supreme Lord Sankarshana, feeling pity, thereupon released the one bound up and said to Krishna: (37) 'How improper of You, o Krishna; this clipping of Yours, of his mustache and hair so badly, is as terrible as the death of a family member!' 

(38) [To Rukminî:] 'O saintly lady, please don't be angry with Us making such a mess of your brother; there is to the matter of who brings happiness and grief no one else responsible but the person in question, since everyone has to face the consequences of his own actions.' 

(39) [And to Krishna again:] 'Even though a relative because of his wrongdoing deserves to be killed, should he by a relative not be killed, but instead be banned [from the family]; why should he who because of his evil deeds ended his own [honorable] life, be killed a second time?'

(40) [To Rukminî:] 'The sacred code of warriors as established by the founding father [Brahmâ] is that a brother even mustn't hesitate to kill his own brother. And that indeed is something most dreadful.'

(41) [Back to Krishna again:] 'Those being proud of a kingdom, land, riches, women, honor and power or something else [other than the soul] do, blinded as they are in their infatuation about the opulence, for that reason indeed commit offenses.' 

(42) [And to Rukminî again:] 'In this attitude of yours toward all living beings, of wishing evil to the ones inimical and good to well-wishers, are you as partial as any ignoramus. (43) By the illusory power of God is effected that people in their ways are bewildered about the Real Self so that they, who thus take the body for the soul, speak in terms of having a friend, an enemy or someone neutral. (44) Those who are bewildered perceive the One and Only Supreme Soul of each and all embodied being as being many, just like one does with the stars [not recognized as a cohering galaxy] or the air [seen as different for an enclosed space, see also B.G. 18: 20-21 and 1.2: 32]. (45) The physical body having a beginning and an end is composed of the physical elements, the senses and the modes of nature. Because of material ignorance is it something imposed upon the self and is it thus the cause of experiencing the cycle of birth and death. (46) For the soul in contact with anything else, o chaste one, is there no separation because of the originating from it [as with the individual soul] or untruth because of being revealed by it [as a physical form]; like it is also with the sun in relation to the seeing and the form seen. (47) Birth and such are but transformations of the body, never of the soul, just as the lunar phases do not imply that the moon has died on the day of a new moon. (48) Like a sleeping person experiences himself, sense-objects and results of action even though they're not real, undergoes the same way an unintelligent person his material existence [see also 6.16: 55-56]. (49) Therefore, o you with the pristine smile, please be yourself again [as the goddess of fortune] and dispell with the knowledge of the essence the sadness born of ignorance of which you dried up and were confounded.' 

(50) S'rî S'uka said: 'The slender-waisted one thus enlightened by Balarâma, the Supreme Lord, gave up her despondency and regained her composure with intelligence. (51) Left with only his life air, expelled by his enemies and deprived of his strength and luster was he [Rukmî] unable to forget his humiliation. Frustrated in his personal desires he then built himself a residence. It became a large city named Bhojakatha ['having experienced the vow']. (52) Having said 'Without killing the evil-minded Krishna, without retrieving my sister, I will not return to Kundina', took he angry right on that spot up his residence. (53) The Supreme Lord, thus defeating the earthly rulers, brought the daughter of Bhîshmaka to His capital and married her according the vidhi, o protector of the Kurus. (54) To that occasion there was great rejoicing in each and every home of the Yadu city were, o King, the people had no one but Krishna, the leader of the Yadus, as their object of love. (55) The men and women, joyful with shining jewels and earrings, respectfully presented wedding gifts to the ones celebrated, who were exquisitely dressed. (56) The city of the Vrishnis appeared beautiful with the festive columns raised, the variety of flower garlands, the banners, the gems and the arches with at every doorway an arrangement of auspicious items as pots full of water, aguru incense and lamps. (57) It's streets were sprinkled with the help of elephants dripping with mada who belonged to the popular personalities who were invited and at the doorways, to further enhance the beauty, were placed plantain and betelnut stems.  (58) The members of the Kuru, Sriñjaya, Kaikeya, Vidarbha, Yadu and Kunti families enjoyed the occasion of being together in the midst of the people who excitedly ran about. (59) Hearing about the kidnapping of Rukminî that was being sung all around, became the kings and their daughters greatly amazed. (60) O King, in Dvârakâ were all the citizens overjoyed to see Krishna, the Master of all Opulence joined in marriage with Rukminî, the goddess of fortune.'

 

Chapter 55

The History of Pradyumna

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'Cupid [Kâmadeva], an expansion of Vâsudeva who previously got burned by the anger of Rudra, had, in order to again obtain a body, returned to Him [see also 3.1: 28 and 8.10: 32-34 and B.G. 10: 28]. (2) He from the seed of Krishna begotten in the daughter of the king of Vidarbha [Rukminî] was thus known as Pradyumna ['the preeminently mighty one', see also vyûha] and was in no respect inferior to His Father. (3) S'ambara ['the juggler' see 7.2: 4-5, 10.36: 36], who could assume any form he wanted, stole the child away that wasn't even ten days old yet. Understanding He was his enemy, threw he Him in the ocean and returned he home. (4) Pradyumna was swallowed by a mighty fish that together with others trapped in a huge net was caught by fishermen. (5) The fishermen presented the amazing fish to S'ambara who sent the gift to the cooks who in the kitchen cut it open with a knife. (6) Seeing a child in its belly it was given to Mâyâvatî to whom being astonished Nârada related the facts about the child its birth and how it had ended up in the belly of the fish. (7-8) She, who by S'ambara was appointed to prepare rice and vegetables, was in fact Cupid's famous wife named Rati who [after pleading with Lord S'iva being directed to S'ambara] was waiting for her burned husband to attain a new body. Understanding that the infant was Kâmadeva she developed love for the child. (9) Not so long thereafter was He, the son of Krishna, attaining full youth, very enchanting to the women who saw Him. (1o) My best, lovingly approached she with a bashful smile, raised eyebrows and glances and gestures of sexual attraction Him, her husband, the most beautiful one in society with His long arms and eyes with the form of a lotus petal. (11) To her said the Supreme Lord in the form of Krishna's own son: 'O mother in your attitude differently acting like a girlfriend you overstep the mood of motherly affection.'

(12) Rati replied: 'You are the son of Nârâyana stolen by S'ambara from Your home and I am Your legitimate wife Rati, o Cupid my Master! (13) You not yet being ten days old were by him, that demon S'ambara, thrown into the ocean where a fish devoured You from the belly of which we saw You appearing here o master! (14) Please put an end to that hard to approach and difficult to conquer enemy of Yours who knows hundreds of magic spells; that You can realize with the help of the bewilderment of magic and such! (15) Your poor mother with her son gone, pitiful distressed like a cow without her calf, is being overwhelmed with love for her child crying like an osprey.'

(16) Thus speaking gave Mâyâvatî that great soul Pradyumna the mystic knowledge of Mahâmâyâ ['the great bewildering potency'] that puts an end to all deluding spells. (17) As He thereupon approached S'ambara for battle, reviled He him with intolerable insults in order to provoke a fight. (18) He offended by the harsh words with his eyes turned red as copper, infuriated like a snake is when struck by a foot, came forward holding a mace. (19) Whirling his club swiftly threw he it at Pradyumna the Great Soul, producing a sound as sharp as a stroke of lightning. (20) It was in its flight by the Supreme Lord with His club knocked away, o King, upon which He angered hurled His own club at His enemy. (21) He, the demon, resorting to the daitya magic he had learned from Maya Dânava, released from above in the sky a downpour of weapons over the son of Krishna [compare: 3.19: 20]. (22) Harassed by the rain of weapons implemented the powerful warrior, the son of Rukminî, the great charm rooting in goodness which supersedes all magic. (23) The demon then used hundreds of weapons belonging to Kuvera's guardians [Guhyakas], the heavenly singers [Gandharvas], the ogres [Pis'âcas], the celestial snakes [Uragas ] and the man-eaters [Râkshasas], but the son of Krishna stroke them all down. (24) Drawing His sharp-edged sword severed he with one violent blow S'ambara's head, complete with his helmet, earrings and red mustache from his body. (25) Being showered by the gods from above who of praise scattered flowers, was He by His wife traveling through the sky brought to the city [of Dvârakâ]. (26) The inner palace most exquisite, o King, crowded with hundreds of women was by Him with His wife entered from the sky like a cloud with lightning. (27-28) Seeing Him dark as a cloud, dressed in yellow silk, with long arms, reddish eyes, a pleasing smile, His charming countenance; His nicely decorated lotuslike face and the bluish-black curling locks became the women, thinking He was Krishna, bashful and took they off to hide themselves here and there. (29) By and by realized the ladies slight differences in appearance and approached they delighted and surprised Him and [Rati,] that jewel among women. (30) The breasts of the sweet-voiced and dark-eyed Rukminî, remembering her lost son, then flowed of affection.

(31) [She thought:] 'Who would this gem among men be, whose son is He and what lotus-eyed woman has carried Him in her womb, and even more, who is this woman won by Him? (32) If my son lost from the maternity room were alive somewhere, He'd be of the same age and appearance! (33) How could He have acquired the same appearance in body, gait, limbs, voice, smile and glance as that of the wielder of S'ârnga [Krishna's bow]? (34) Considering my great affection for Him and the trembling in my left arm, He's no doubt - He must be - for sure, the child I carried in my womb!'

(35) While the daughter of the king of Vaidarbha was thus conjecturing arrived the Lord Hailed in the Scriptures there together with Devakî and Ânakadundhubi. (36) Even though the Supreme Lord understood the matter remained He, Janârdana, silent; it was Nârada who told the whole story beginning with the kidnapping by S'ambara. (37) The women of Krishna's residence hearing of that great wonder then cheered in ecstasy to welcome the one lost for so many years as if someone had returned from death. (38) Devakî, Vasudeva, Krishna, Balarâma as also the women and Rukminî embraced the couple and rejoiced. (39) The residents of Dvârakâ hearing that Pradyumna being lost had returned declared: 'O providence, the child we thought dead has really come back!'

(40) It was not that surprising at all that they, who constantly thought of the resemblance with His father their master, in being His mothers in the full of their attraction backed off in respect of Him. With them doing so with the way He appeared before their eyes as the spitting image of the Shelter of the Goddess of Fortune His form, as Cupid the God of Love in person, then what would one expect of other women?'  

 

Chapter 56

How the Syamantaka jewel Brought Krishna Jâmbavatî and Satyabhâmâ

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'Satrâjit ['always victorious', see 9.24: 13] having been offensive with Lord Krishna gave Him as atonement his daughter in marriage together with the jewel known as Syamantaka.'

(2) The honorable king said: 'What offense committed Satrâjit against Krishna, o brahmin, from where came Syamantaka and why gave he his daughter to the Lord?'

(3) S'rî S'uka said: 'The sun-god who was Satrâjit's best friend gave, satisfied with him as his devotee, full of affection the jewel called Syamantaka. (4) He, wearing that jewel shining as brilliant as the sun around his neck was, when he arrived in Dvârakâ o King, because of the effulgence not recognized. (5) The people, by the glare robbed of their vision when they saw him from a distance, presumed that Sûrya had arrived and reported that to the Supreme Lord who was engaged in a game of dice: (6) 'O Nârâyana, with obeisances unto You, o Holder of Club, Cakra and Lotus, o Dâmodara, o Lotus-eyed One, o Govinda, o beloved of the Yadus! (7) Savitâ ['the radiant one'], who with the intense radiation of his radiating disc steals the vision of men, has come to see You, o Lord of the Universe. (8) It must be so that of the most exalted of the gods of wisdom seeking out Your path, the one not born [Sûrya], knowing that You now hide among the Yadus, has come to see You.'

(9) S'rî S'uka said: 'Hearing these innocent words said He with the Lotuslike Eyes smiling: 'That's not Ravideva, it's Satrâjit glowing because of his jewel.'

(10) He [Satrâjit] arriving at his opulent home executed with festivity auspicious rituals in the temple room where he with the help of the learned installed the jewel. (11) Day after day would it bring him eight bhâras [of about 9.7 kg] of gold, o prabhu, and none of the inauspicious of famines, premature deaths, catastrophes, snakebites, mental and physical disorders and cheaters would there in the presence of the gem properly being worshiped take place. (12) Some day asked S'auri [Krishna] on behalf of the king of the Yadus [Ugrasena] for the gem, but, he, greedy for the wealth, saw no offense in it not to hand it over. (13) One day, hanging the intensely radiating jewel around his neck, mounted Prasena [Satrâjit's brother] a horse and went he hunting in the forest. (14) Prasena along with his horse were killed and dragged away by a lion who on his turn entering a cave was killed by Jâmbavân ['he from the Jambu-trees'] who wanted the jewel. (15) He then in the cave handed the jewel over to his kid as a toy to play with. Meanwhile not seeing his brother, got Satrâjit deeply troubled: (16) 'My brother gone to the forest wearing the jewel around his neck is probably killed by Krishna', and what he thus said was what the people heard whispering in one another's ears. (17) When the Supreme Lord came to hear of it followed He, in order to clear Himself of the gossip of His infamy, together with the citizens the path taken by Prasena. (18) Seeing that he and his horse were killed by a lion in that forest, discovered they that the lion had been killed too on a mountain slope by Riksha [Jâmbhavân]. (19) Stationing the people outside of the terrifying cave of the king of the rikshas [the bears] entered the Supreme Lord alone the pitch-dark place. (20) When He saw that that most precious of jewels was used as a child's plaything, decided He to take it away and approached He the child. (21) Seeing the stranger cried the nurse in fear so that Jâmbavân, that best one of the strong, when he heard that in anger ran forward. (22) He keeping Him for a worldly person, fought then, unaware of who he dealt with, against Him, the Supreme Lord, his own Master [compare 5.6: 10-11 and B.G. 16: 18]. (23) A very furious fight ensued between the two who each tried to win with the help of stones, trees, their arms and with weapons as if they were two hawks fighting over some meat. (24) Day and night continued without interruption for twenty-eight days the fight of fists against fists with blows hard as lightening. (25) With the muscles of his huge body pummeled by the blows of Krishna's fists, perspired he, diminished in strength, all over and addressed he Him in great amazement: (26) 'I know You, You are the life air, the physical and mental strength of all living beings, Lord Vishnu, the Primeval Personality, the All-powerful Supreme Controller. (27) You indeed are the Creator who of All Creators and the Created of the Universe art the Essence, who of the subduers art the Subduer, the Lord, the Soul Supreme to all the Souls [compare 3.25: 41-42]. (28) You are the One of whose little evidence of anger with Your glances the ocean and the crocodiles and whale-eating whales [timingilas] agitated gave way for building a bridge; You are the one famous for setting Lankâ afire; by Your hand fell the heads of the Râkshasa to the ground that You cut off with Your arrows [see 9: 10].'

(29-30) O King, Acyuta, the lotus-eyed Supreme Lord, the son of Devakî, then from His great compassion for His devotees addressed the king of the bears who had understood the truth. Touching him with the hand that bestows all blessings said He with with a voice as deep as the [rumbling] clouds: (31) 'O lord of the bears, We came here to the cave because of the jewel, in order to dispel the false accusation that with this jewel was held against Me.' (32) Thus addressed presented he along with the jewel happily as a respectful offering his maiden daughter named Jâmbavatî to Krishna.

(33) Not seeing S'auri who had entered the cave coming out, went the people after waiting for twelve days unhappy back to their city. (34) Devakî, Rukminî devî, Vasudeva and all His friends and relatives lamented over Krishna not coming out of the cave. (35) They, the residents of Dvârakâ sorrowfully cursed Satrâjit and then worshiped Durgâ, the fortune of the moon [the deity called Candrabhâgâ] in order to retrieve Krishna. (36) After the worship of the goddess granted she responding to them the benediction. Directy thereafter appeared to their great jubilation the Lord who had achieved His purpose on the scene together with His [new] wife. (37) Greatly aroused on finding out that Hrishîkes'a had come with a wife and the jewel around His neck, they all rejoiced as if someone had risen from death. (38) Satrâjit, summoned by the Supreme Lord to the royal assembly, was in the presence of the king informed of the recovery of the jewel which then was presented to him. (39) And he took extremely ashamed, head down, the gem and went home leaving full of remorse about his sinful behavior. (40-42) Pondering over that evident offense thought he, apprehensive about a conflict with the ones in power: 'How will I cleanse myself of the contamination and how can I satisfy Acyuta? What good should I do so that the people won't curse me for being narrow-minded, petty, befooled and avaricious after the wealth? I'll give the [Syamantaka-]jewel to Him as well as my daughter, that jewel among women; that's the way to make it up with Him and nothing else!'

(43) Thus intelligently deciding set Satrâjit himself to it and presented he his fair daughter and the jewel to Krishna. (44) She, Satyabhâmâ, sought by many men for being endowed with the qualities of a fine character, beauty and magnanimity, married the Lord according the customs. (45) The Supreme Lord said: 'We do not desire back the jewel o King, let it remain with you being of devotion with the godhead [Sûrya] so that We may also be the enjoyers of its fruits.'

 

 

Chapter 57

Satrâjit Murdered, the Jewel Stolen and Returned Again

(1) The son of Vyâsa said: 'Even though He was aware of what factually had transpired went Krishna, hearing [of the rumor] that the sons of Pându and queen Kuntî had burned to death [in the house of lac], in order to answer to His family obligations together with Balarâma to the Kuru kingdom. (2) Meeting with Bhîshma, Kripa, Vidura, Gândhârî and Drona They equally sorrowful said: 'Ah how painful this is!'

(3) Getting the chance, o King, said Akrûra and [the Bhoja] Kritavarmâ [meanwhile in Krishna's absence in Dvârakâ] to S'atadhanvâ ['hundredbow', a bad character]: 'Why not take the jewel? (4) He who promised each of us his gem of a daughter, gave her, ignoring us, to Krishna; why then should Satrâjit not follow his brother [in death, see 10.56: 13 and footnote*]?'(5) Thus influenced by the two killed that most wicked man, in his sinfulness shortening his lifespan, out of greed Satrâjit while he was sleeping [compare 1.17: 39]. (6) As the women helplessly cried calling for help took he, after having killed like a butcher does animals, the jewel and took he off.

(7) When Satyabhâmâ saw that her father had been killed, lamented she thrown in grief: 'O father, alas o father, with you being killed I am killed!' and then she fainted. (8) Putting the corpse in a large vessel of oil she went to Hastinâpura to Krishna who [already] knew of the situation, and related sorrowfully the murder of her father. (9) The Lords hearing that o King, imitating the human ways both lamented with eyes full of tears: 'Oh what a tragedy fell upon us!'

(10) The Supreme Lord then went back to His capital with His wife and elder brother, prepared to kill S'atadhanvâ and take the jewel from him. (11) He, learning that, in fear took action to save his life and entreated for assistance Kritavarmâ who told him: (12-13) 'I cannot be of any offense with the Lords Râma and Krishna; how can he who causes Them trouble indeed be of good fortune? Kamsa and his followers in their hatred of waging against Them lost their wealth and lives while Jarâsandha in seventeen battles [even] lost his chariot!'

(14) He, turned down, next begged Akrûra for help but he also said: 'Who, knowing the strength of the Lordships, can oppose Them? (15-17) He who maintains, creates and destroys this universe as a pastime; He whose purpose is not even known to the secondary creators [headed by Brahmâ] who are bewildered by His invincible potency [of mâyâ]; He who playing as a child of seven years old uprooted a mountain that He held up with a single hand like a boy does a mushroom [see 10.25]; Him, Krishna the Supreme Lord to whose wondrous acts there is no end I do worship; Him who as the source of all existence is the Supreme Soul, the immovable center, I offer my obeisances.'

(18) He, S'atadhanvâ also by him refused, left the precious jewel with him, mounted a horse that could cover a hundred yojanas and departed. (19) Krishna and Râma mounting the chariot with the emblem of Garuda followed with the swiftest horses, o King, the murderer of Their guru [Their father-in-law as a teacher]. (20) In a Mithilâ suburban park abandoning his horse that had fallen, ran he on foot terrified with a furious Krishna who likewise speeded after him. (21) With him on the run severed the Lord on foot with the sharp edged disc his head from his body, and searched He his upper and lower garments for the gem. (22) Not finding the stone said Krishna going to His approaching elder brother: 'S'atadhanvâ was killed in vain, he didn't carry the jewel.'

(23) Balarâma then said: 'S'atadhanvâ must have left the rock with some person, so go [back] to the city [of Dvârakâ] and search him out. (24) l wish to see the king of Videha [the later Janaka, see 9.10: 11] most dear to Me', and thus having spoken entered the descendant of Yadu, o King, Mithilâ [the capital of Videha]. (25) Seeing Him rose the king of Mithilâ immediately with a mind full of love and honored he Him who was so worshipable, as was prescribed with all there was to it. (26) There in Mithilâ did He, the Mighty One, honored by the affectionate Janaka, the great soul, live for several years. During that time taught He Duryodhana to wield the club.

(27) Kes'ava the All-powerful One arriving in Dvârakâ, told to the comfort of His beloved [the grieving Satyabhâmâ] of the demise of S'atadhanvâ and the failure to get hold of the jewel. (28) He, the Supreme Lord together with all the well-wishers one may so have at the end of one's life, then saw to it that the obsequies were performed for the deceased relative [Satrâjit]. (29) The ones responsible, Akrûra and Kritavarmâ, upon hearing that S'atadhanvâ had   been killed, went stricken by fear into exile outside of Dvârakâ. (30) With Akrûra in exile ill omens arose indeed for the residents of Dvârakâ that gave them by higher powers [natural disasters included] and other living beings [compare 1.14; 1.17: 19], constantly trouble in body and mind [**]. (31) Thus, my dear, were some lost in guesses forgetting what of old had been described by the sages as the consequence of His stay among the human beings; how could with Him present any calamity arise? (32) [They said:] 'When Indra withheld the rains gave the king of Benares [Kâs'î, see also 9.17: 4] his daughter Gândinî to S'vaphalka [Akrûra's father, 9.24: 15] who came to him, after which it then indeed rained in Kâs'î. (33) Wherever indeed he, Akrûra, his son, having his [father's] prowess stays, will lord Indra shower rains and will there be no painful disturbances or untimely deaths.'

(34) Hearing of the elders these words, ordered Janârdana, with the thought in mind that this was not the only explanation for the omens happening [***], that Akrûra should be brought back. (35-36) Greeting him with respect and honor and pleasantly discussing topics, smiled He, fully aware of everything that went on in his heart, and said: 'We of course, o master of charity, are already familiar with the fact that you indeed at present hold the opulent Syamantaka jewel that S'atadhanvâ put under your care. (37) Since Satrâjit had no sons is it his daughter's sons [she and her sons] who after presenting water, offerings and having cleared his remaining debts, should receive his inheritance. (38-39) Nevertheless should the jewel, because it for others is impossible to manage, remain with you, o trustworthy keeper of the vows. However, My brother does not completely believe Me concerning the gem. Please, to bring peace to My relatives, show it Us now, o most fortunate soul who with your altars of gold without interruption continue with your sacrifices.' (40) Thus won over by the conciliant words took the son of S'vaphalka the gem hidden in his garment and gave he the gem that shone as brilliant as the sun. (41) After showing Syamantaka to His relatives, [and thus] doing away with the emotions [of the accusations held] with Him, offered the Master it back to him again. (42) Whoever recites, hears or remembers this narration which indeed, rich as it is with the prowess of the Supreme Controller Vishnu, most auspiciously removes the reactions to sin, will attain peace and drive away his badness and bad reputation.'

Footnotes:

Being pure devotees, they could not actually be unhappy about this match, nor could they become jealous rivals of the Lord. Therefore they had an ulterior motive in behaving like His rivals. So there are speculations in the paramparâ about Akrûra's being cursed for his taking Krishna away from Gokula [see10.39] or Kritavarmâ's being a member of Kamsa's family, or that the two might have been angry with the victim for his spoiling Krishna's good name slandering that He would have killed his brother.

** According to S'rîla S'rîdhara Svâmî, reasoning after verse 32 and 35-36, took Akrûra the Syamantaka jewel and went to reside in the city of Benares, where he became known as Dânapati, "the master of charity." There he executed elaborate fire sacrifices on gold altars with assemblies of qualified priests.

*** Also concerning this there are speculations on why there could have been this trouble despite of the Lord His gracious presence. Some suggest that Krishna would give the bad times because of being compromised by Akrûra taking the jewel elsewhere in competion to His rule, at the other hand it is not unusual that murder in a community to the rule of God and Krishna gives that community a bad time, as one also can observe generally taking place after major wars as evidenced in the Bhâgavatam describing the bad times when Krishna Himself departed for His abode after the great Kuru-war [1.14].

 

 

Chapter 58

Krishna also Weds Kâlindî, Mitravindâ, Satyâ, Lakshmanâ and Bhadrâ [*]

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'Once, to see the sons of Pându, went the Supreme Personality Visible to the Eye, the Possessor of all Opulence, to Indraprastha accompanied by Yuyudhâna [Sâtyaki, His charioteer] and others. (2) Seeing Him, Mukunda, the Controller of All having arrived, stood the heroes all up at once, as if the chief of their senses, their life air, had returned. (3) The heroes embracing Acyuta by the contact with His body found all their sins destroyed and experienced the joy of beholding His face smiling affectionately. (4) After offering His obeisances at the feet of Yudhishthhira and Bhîma [since they were older] and firmly embracing Phâlguna [or Arjuna, being only eight days older] He next greeted respectfully the twin brothers [Nakula and Sahadeva, who were younger]. (5) Sitting on an elevated seat was Krishna, slowly approached by the newly [to the Pândavas] wed, impeccable [Draupadî] to offer her obeisances. (6) Similarly was Sâtyaki welcomed, honored and seated by the sons of Prithâ and were also the others honored and seated around. (7) Going to Kuntî offering His obeisances was He embraced by her with her eyes wet of her extreme affection [see also 1.8: 18-43]; inquiring after the welfare of her and her daughter-in-law [Draupadî], inquired she on her turn as the sister of His father [Vasudeva] in detail about His relatives. (8) With tears in her eyes and with a throat choked up in her love for Him who shows Himself to dispel the distress, said she, remembering the many trials and tribulations: (9) 'Only then were we faring better when by You as a protector remembering us, Your relatives, o Krishna, my brother [Akrûra] was sent [see 10.49]. (10) For You, the Well-wisher and Soul of the Universe, there is never the delusion of 'ours' and 'theirs'; nonetheless do You, situated in the heart put an end to the sufferings of those who remember [You] continuously [see also B.G. 9: 29].'

(11) Yudhishthhira said: 'I don't know what good deeds we, of doubtful intellect, all have performed to [be allowed to] see You, o Supreme Controller whom the Controllers of Yoga rarely [get to] see.'

(12) Thus by the king invited stayed He, the Almighty, happily during the months of the rainy season [see also: 10.20] for the eyes of the residents of Indraprastha generating bliss. (13-14) Some day [**] in armor mounting his chariot with the monkey [or Hanumân] flag and taking up his Gândîva [his bow] and two inexhaustible quivers of arrows, entered Arjuna, the slayer of enemy heroes, in order to sport together with Krishna a large forest filled with many beasts of prey [see also B.G. chapter 1]. (15) There he shot with his arrows tigers, boars, wild buffalo, rurus [sort of antelopes], s'arabhas [sort of deer], gavayas [sort of oxen], rhinoceroses, black deer, rabbits and porcupines [see also 4.28: 26 and 5.26: 13]. (16) Servants to the king carried them to be sacrificed at a special occasion [otherwise the hunt would have been forbidden, see 9.6: 7-8] and overcome by thirst went Bibhatsa ['the frightening one', Arjuna] fatigued to the Yamunâ. (17) When the two great chariot fighters took a bath there and drank from the clear water, saw the two Krishnas [see B.G. 10: 37] a maiden walking charming to behold. (18) Sent by his Friend, approached Phâlguna the exquisite woman who had fine hips and teeth and an attractive face, and inquired: (19) 'Who are you, to whom do you belong, o slender-waisted girl, from where are you or what are your plans; I think you're looking for a husband, tell me all about it, o beauty!'

(20) S'rî Kâlindî said: 'I am the daughter of the demigod Savitâ [the sun-god], engaged in severe austerities in my desire for Vishnu, the most excellent granter of boons, as my husband [see also Gâyatrî]. (21) I want no other husband but Him, o hero, may the Abode of S'rî [the goddess], He the Supreme Lord Mukunda, the shelter of the helpless, be satisfied with me. (22) Until I meet Acyuta, am I living in a mansion built by my father in the Yamunâ-waters and am I thus named Kâlindî [see also bhajan verse 2 and 10.15: 47-52].' (23) So Gudâkes'a put this before Vâsudeva who fully aware of it all lifted her up in His chariot and drove off to king Dharma [Yudhishthhira].

(24) For the sons of Prithâ had Krishna [in the past], the moment He was asked, by Vis'vakarmâ constructed a most amazing colorful city [Indraprastha]. (25) The Supreme Lord residing there for the pleasure of His devotees desired to give to Agni the Khândava ['sugar-candy'] forest [at Kurukshetra] and became he for that purpose [burning down the forest] Arjuna's charioteer. (26) Pleased with that gave Agni to Arjuna a bow and a chariot with white horses, o King, two inexhaustible quivers of arrows and an armor impenetrable to whatever armed opposition. (27) Maya [the demon] delivered from the fire presented [in gratitude] an assembly hall to his friend [Arjuna] in which Duryodhana took the water he saw therein for a solid floor [so that he fell in, see 10.75]. (28) He [Krishna] by him [Arjuna] and His well-wishers permitted to leave went back to Dvârakâ accompanied by Sâtyaki and the rest of His entourage [see also 1: 10]. (29) But now married He, supremely auspicious, Kâlindî at a day the seasons, the stars and the other luminaries were most favorable for spreading the greatest happiness among His people.

(30) Vindya and Anuvindya, two kings from Avantî [Ujjain] subservient to Duryodhana, obstructed their sister [Mitravindâ] who was attracted to Krishna, in her svayamvara [choice for a husband]. (31) Mitravindâ, the daughter of Râjâdhidevî, His father's sister [9.24: 28-31], was with force, as the kings were watching, taken away by Krishna, o King [compare 10.53].

(32) Of the most religious ruler of Kaus'alya [Ayodhyâ, see 9.10: 32] named Nagnajit there was a divine daughter Satyâ who was also called Nâgnajitî, o King. (33) None of the kings could marry her without defeating seven uncontrollable bulls with the sharpest horns who vicious as they were had no tolerance for the smell of warriors. (34) Hearing of her being attainable for the one who had defeated the bulls, went the Supreme Lord, the Master of the Sâtvatas, to the Kaus'alya capital surrounded by a large army. (35) The lord of Kos'ala standing up [upon His arrival], and worshipful seating Him with substantial offerings and so on, was in return also greeted. (36) The daughter of the king seeing that the suitor of her desire had arrived prayed: 'May, provided that I keep to the vows, the fire [of sacrifice] make my hopes come true; let Him, the Husband of Ramâ become my husband! (37) He of whose lotus-like feet the one from the lotus [Brahmâ] and the master of the mountain [S'iva] together with the various rulers of the world hold the dust on their heads, He who for His pastime with the desire to protect the codes of religion that He Himself instigated each time [that He's around] assumes a body, with what can He, that Supreme Lord, by me be pleased?'

(38) He [Nagnajit] said to the One worshiped further the following: 'O Nârâyana, o Lord of the Universe, what may I who am so insignificant do for You Filled with the Happiness of the Soul?'

(39) S'rî S'uka said: 'O child of the Kurus, the Supreme Lord pleased to accept a seat, with a smile spoke to him with a voice deep as a [rumbling] cloud. (40) The Supreme Lord said: 'O ruler of man, for a member of the royal order following his own dharma is to beg for something condemned by the learned; nevertheless do I beg for your friendship with an eye at your daughter for whom We, though, offer nothing in return.'

(41) The King said: 'Who else but You, o Superior Lordship, would in this world be a groom desirable for my daughter; You, on Whose body the Goddess resides and never leaves, are the only One harboring the qualities! (42) But, by us has before a condition been set, o best of the Sâtvatas, for the purpose of testing the prowess of the suitors of my daughter who is looking for a husband. (43) These seven wild bulls, o hero, are untamable; a great number of princes have broken their limbs being defeated by them. (44) If they are subdued by You o descendant of Yadu, have You my approval as the groom for my daughter, o Husband of S'rî.' (45) Thus hearing of the condition set, tightened the Master His clothes and did He, turning Himself into seven, subdue them as if it concerned a simple game. (46) Tying them up with ropes dragged S'auri them broken in their pride and strength behind Him like He was a boy playing with a wooden toy. (47) The astonished king pleased then gave Krishna his suitable daughter who by the Supreme Lord, the Master, was accepted according the vedic injunctions. (48) The queens, with attaining Krishna as the dear husband of the princess, felt the highest ecstasy upon which great jubilation took hold of them. (49) conch shells, horns and drums resounded together with songs and instrumental music; the twice-born pronounced blessings and joyful men and women finely dressed adorned themselves with garlands. (50-51) As a wedding gift gave the mighty king ten thousand cows, three thousand excellently dressed maidens with golden ornaments around their necks, nine thousand elephants, a hundred times as many chariots with a hundred times as many horses and to that a hundred times as many men as there were horses. (52) He, the king of Kos'ala, with his heart melting of affection had the couple seated on their chariot and then sent them off surrounded by a large army. (53) Hearing of this blocked the [rival] kings, in their strength just as broken by the Yadus as the bulls were before, incapable of accepting the frustration the road along which He was taking His bride. (54) They, releasing volleys of arrows, were by Arjuna, the wielder of Gândîva who acted like a lion in his desire to please his Friend, driven back like they were vermin. (55) The son of Devakî, the Supreme Lord and Chief of the Yadus, taking the dowry with Him then arrived in Dvârakâ where He lived happily with Satyâ.

(56) Bhadrâ a princess of Kaikeya and daughter of S'rutakîrti, His father's sister, was by her brothers headed by Santardana [see 9.24: 38] given in marriage to Krishna.

(57) The Lord also married Lakshmanâ, the daughter of the King of Madra who was endowed with all good qualities; she was by Krishna at her svayamvara ceremony by Him single-handedly taken away, just like Garuda once stole the nectar away from the demigods [see also 10.83: 17].

(58) After killing Bhaumâsura [***] became thousands of other just as beautiful women who by him were taken captive, Krishna's wives.'

 

Footnotes:

 * In sum Krishna wed 16008 wives: 1: Rukminî, 2 Jâmbavatî, 3 Satyabhâmâ, 4 Kâlindî, 5 Mitravindâ, 6 Satyâ (Nâgnajitî), 7 Bhadrâ, 8 Lakshmanâ, as discussed in 10.83: 17 and the 1600o wives held captive by Bhaumâsura.

** A date after the burning of the Khândava forest that is referred to later in verse 25.

*** A demon according the Vishnu-purâna born as a consequence of Lord Varâha touching mother earth when He lifted her up from the ocean [see 3.13: 31].

 

 

Chapter 59

Mura and Bhauma Killed and the Prayers of Bhûmi

(1) The honorable king said: 'Please tell me of this adventure of the wielder of S'ârnga [Krishna]. How was Bhauma, who captured these women, killed by the Supreme Lord?'

(2-3) S'rî S'uka said: 'Informed by Indra, whose parasol of Varuna [his sign of royalty] as well as a place [called Mani-parvata] on the mountain of the gods [Mandara hill, see 8.6: 22-23] had been stolen and whose relative [mother Aditi, see 8.17] had been robbed of her earrings, went He [Lord Krishna answering] to what Bhaumâsura all had done together with His wife [Satyabhâmâ see *] seated on Garuda to the city of Prâgjyotisha [Bhauma's capital now Tejpur of Assam], which lay protected surrounded by mountains and weapons, fire, water and wind and was fortified by a [mura-pâs'a] fence consisting of tens of thousands of tough and dreadful wires on all sides. (4) With His club broke He through the rock fortifications, with His arrows defeated He the weapon systems, with His disc He broke through the fire, water and wind defense and with His sword found He likewise His way through the fence. (5) With the resounding of His conch shell breaking the seals [of the fortress] and the hearts of the brave warriors, broke Gadâdhara with His heavy mace through the ramparts. (6) Hearing the vibration of the Lord His Pâñcajanya, that sounded like the thunder when the universe ends, rose up the five-headed demon Mura who lay asleep in the water [of the moat]. (7) Raising his trident, most difficult to behold with an effulgence as terrible as the fire of the sun, launched he, as if he with his five mouths would swallow the three worlds, his attack the way the son of Târkshya [Garuda] would attack a snake. (8) Whirling about his trident threw he it with all his strength at Garuda with such a tumultuous roar of his five mouths that the earth, the sky, outer space in all directions and that the egglike shell of the universe reverberated. (9) Lord Krishna then with two arrows broke the trident flying at Garuda in three pieces and next hit with great force his faces with more arrows. Thereupon hurled the demon in anger his club at Him. (10) That club flying at Him was by the Elder Brother of Gada [Gadâgraja, Krishna] on the battlefield broken into thousands of pieces. With him next with his arms raised rushing at Him, sliced the unconquerable One with ease the heads off with His disc. (11) As he lifeless fell into the water with his heads severed as if Indra with his force had split off a mountain peak, moved his seven sons, feeling greatly distressed upon their father's death, angered into action to retaliate.

(12) Engaged by Bhaumâsura came Tâmra, Antariksha, S'ravana, Vibhâvasu, Vasu, Nabhasvân and Aruna the seventh with Pîthha leading as their general out to the battlefield carrying their weapons. (13) In their attack they angrily used swords, clubs, spears, lances and tridents against the Invincible One, but at no time was He in His prowess frustrated by their mountain of weapons; the Supreme Lord cut them with His arrows all into tiny pieces. (14) Cutting off their heads, thighs, arms, legs and armor sent He them all who were headed by Pîthha to the abode of Yamarâja. Bhauma, the son of mother earth, seeing how his army and leaders succumbed to the arrows and disc of Krishna, unable to bear that stepped forward with mada exuding elephants that were born from the milk ocean. (15) Seeing Lord Krishna with His wife sitting upon Garuda like a cloud with lightning sits above the sun, released he his S'ataghnî [spiked missile] at Him and attacked at the same time all his soldiers. (16) The Supreme Lord, the Elder Brother of Gada, turned their bodies - and at the same time the bodies of the horses and elephants - with diversely feathered sharp arrows into a collection of severed arms, thighs and necks. (17-19) Each of the sharp and shafted weapons that the warriors employed, o hero of the Kurus, were by Krishna with three arrows at a time cut to pieces. Carried by the great winged one, were with strokes from both his wings by Garuda the elephants beaten. The elephants because of his wings, beak and talons moved in distress back into the city while Naraka ['hell' or Bhauma] continued the battle. (20) Bhauma, annoyed to see how because of Garuda his army was forced in retreat, struck him with the spear that [once] withstood the thunderbolt [of Indra], but he wasn't shaken more by it than an elephant is upon being hit with a flower. (21) Next took Bhauma, frustrated in his endeavors, up his trident to kill Krishna, but before he could even release it, cut the Lord with the razor-sharp edge of His cakra off the head of Bhaumâsura as he was sitting on his elephant. (22) Complete with its brilliant, shining decorations of earrings and a nice helmet fell it to the ground. Worshiping Him with [exclamations of] 'Alas, alas' and 'Bravo bravo!' showered the sages and ruling gods Lord Krishna with flowers.

(23) Thereupon approaching Krishna presented mother earth golden earrings glowing with shining jewels, a Vaijayantî garland of forest flowers and gave she Him the parasol of Varuna and the Great Gem [the peak of Mandara]. (24) The goddess then, o King, with a mind full of devotion folding her palms and bowing down, praised the Lord of the Universe who is worshiped by the best of the gods. (25) Bhûmi said: 'To You my obeisances o God of Gods, o Lord, holder of the conch, the disc and the club, Who to the desire of Your devotees have assumed Your forms, o Supreme Soul; let there be the praise unto You. (26) My homage is for Him with the lotuslike depression in His belly, my reverence for the One with the garland of lotuses, my respects for He whose glance is as cool as a lotus, my praise unto You with the feet that are like lotuses [as in 1.8: 22]. (27) My obeisances unto You, the Supreme Lord, Vâsudeva, Vishnu, the Original Person, the Seed and Full of Knowledge, unto You my salutations. (28) May there be the veneration for You, the Unborn Progenitor, the Unlimited Absolute, the Soul of the energies higher and lower, the Soul of the Creation, the Supersoul! (29) You, desiring to create o Master stand out Unborn [as Brahmâ], for annihilation You adopt the ignorance [as S'iva] and for maintenance You are [manifested as] the goodness [as vishnu-avatâras] of the Universe [and yet are You] not covered [by these modes], o Lord of Jagat [the Living Being that is the Universe]. Being Kâla [time], Pradhâna [the original state of matter] and Purusha [the complete as the Original Person] are You yet of a separate existence. (30) This self of mine, the water, the fire and the air, the ether, the sense objects, the demigods, the mind, the senses, the doer, the total material energy, in sum everything that moves around or doesn't move, constitutes [when it exists only for itself] perplexity o Supreme Lord, because this all resides within You, the One Without a Second [see also siddhânta]! (31) This son of him [Bhauma's son, Bhûmi's grandson] has in his fear approached the lotusfeet of You who removes the distress of those who take shelter; please protect him and place on his head Your lotushand which eradicates all sins.'

(32) S'rî S'uka said: 'The Supreme Lord, with these words entreated by Bhûmi with devotion and humility, entered, to take away the fear, the residence of Bhauma that was rich with all opulences. (33) There the Lord saw sixteen thousand [**] maidens of the royal order who by Bhaumâsura by force were stolen from the kings. (34) The women upon seeing Him entering, the most excellent of all men, enchanted chose for Him who was brought by fate to them as the husband of their desire. (35) Absorbed in Krishna thinking: 'May providence make that He becomes my husband', installed they Him thus all individually in their hearts. (36) Having them properly washed and clad in spotless clothes, sent He them in palanquins off to Dvârakâ together with the enormous treasure of chariots, horses and a great number of other valuables [that was seized].  (37) Kes'ava dispatched also sixty-four swift white elephants with four tusks stemming from the family of Airâvata [Indra's elephant]. (38-39) Going to the abode of the king of the gods and giving Aditi her earrings was He together with His beloved [Satyabhâmâ] worshiped by Indra the head of the [chief] thirty demigods and the great king his wife. Urged by His wife He uprooted the pârijâta, placed it on Garuda and brought it, defeating the demigods [who opposed that], to His city. (40) All the way from heaven followed by the bees greedy for its sweet fragrance and juice, beautified the tree after being planted in the garden of Satyabhâmâ's residence. (41) After he [Indra] had bowed down, to the occasion of which he with the tips of his crown touched His feet, and had begged Acyuta to fulfill his purpose, started he, that great soul among the demigods, having achieved his purpose, to quarrel with Him [about the pârijâta]. To hell with their wealth, what an ignorance! [see also: 3.3: 5]. (42) Then married the Supreme Lord, all at the same time in various residences, those women as should, for the purpose of which the Imperishable One assumed as many forms [see 10.58: 45, 10.69: 19-45 and B.G. 9: 15; 13: 31]. (43) Remaining in their unequalled and superior palaces which He never left, enjoyed He, the performer of the inconceivable, with the women eager to please Him and fulfilled He, being absorbed in the pleasure like any other man, His duties as a householder [see also 1.11: 37-39]. (44) The women so obtaining the Husband of Ramâ thus knew to attain Him in a manner not even available to Brahmâ and the other gods, the way they shared in an ever-increasing pleasure the always fresh loving attraction of associating with Him in smiles and glances, intimate talks and bashfulness. (45) Approaching Him, offering a seat, being of first-class worship, washing His feet, serving with betelnut, massages and fanning, fragrances, garlands, dressing His hair, arranging His bed, bathing and presenting gifts were they, though having hundreds of maidservants, [personally] of service to the Almighty Lord.' 

 

Footnotes:

* The âcâryas explain that Satyabhâmâ would accompany Krishna to give permission to kill Bhauma despite of the promise He once made to Bhûmi, the earth-goddess, not to hurt her son Bhauma without her permission. She would also come along to procure the pârijâta flower tree Krishna had promised her after He brought Rukminî one such flower [see also 10.50: 54 and 3.3: 5]

** As to the number of Krishna's queens there is no absolute agreement. Here is written 16000. The Vishnu Purâna V.19 - 9.31 mentions 16100 while even others speak of 16001. Not counting the verse 10.90: 29 which again mentions over 16100 of them, would reasoning from the Bhâgavatam stories only, there be 16008 queens [see also previous footnote].

 

Chapter 60

Lord Krishna Teases Queen Rukminî

(1) The son of Bâdarâyana [of Vyâsa] said: 'Once comfortably sitting, positioned on her bed was He, the Spiritual Master of the Universe, served by Rukminî who fanned Him, the Husband, together with her female companions. (2) This then was His play: that He, as the Supreme Controller who sends forth, protects and devours the universe, indeed was born to defend His own rule [*] as the Unborn Lord among the Yadus [see also 6.3: 19]. (3-6) In that private part of the palace so brilliant, hung with strings of pearls and resplendent with a canopy, with lamps made with jewels, with jasmine flower garlands swarming with humming bees, with the light of the spotless moon filtered through the openings of the lattice windows, with the fragrance carried by the wind from the grove of pârijâta trees wafting the atmosphere of the garden and with the exciting scent produced from aguru escaping from the window openings, o King, served she her Husband, the Controller of All Worlds, comfortably seated on an excellent pillow of the bed that shone white as the foam of milk. (7) Taking a yak-hair fan with a jeweled handle from the hand of a maidservant fanned the goddess her Master with it in performing worship. (8) Next to Krishna with the rumour of her ankle bells she appeared beautiful with her rings, bangles and fan in her hand and her garment with its tip concealing her breasts red of the kunkum, the glow of her necklace and the priceless belt she wore on her hips. (9) Seeing her appearing as the goddess of fortune with no other purpose in her life, as the woman who pleased and smiling with her locks, earrings and jewels around her neck and her bright and happy face, for the sake of His pastime corresponds with bodies befitting the forms He assumes [**], gave the Lord a nectarine smile and spoke He.

(10) The Supreme Lord said; 'O princess you were desired by kings, rulers of the world of beauty, strength and generosity who were abundantly endowed with great powers, influence and opulence. (11) Rejecting those suitors at your disposition like S'is'upâla and others who mad of Cupid were offered to you by your brother and father, do I wonder why you've chosen for Us so different from them. (12) Afraid of the kings, o lovely-browed one, and moved to the ocean for shelter [to Dvârakâ], have We, of enmity with the ones in power, practically abandoned the throne. (13) O beautiful eyebrows, women usually have to suffer who take to men whose behavior is uncertain in following a path not acceptable to normal society. (14) We without possessions are always very dear to those who have nothing either and are therefore as a rule indeed not so popular with the rich who rarely pay Me tribute o fine-waisted lady. (15) Marriage and friendship is there between two people equal in property, birth, influence, physique and prospects and never ever between a superior and an inferior [in this]! (16) O princess of Vidarbha, this you couldn't foresee, you didn't know, when you chose for Us so void of good qualities, We who are praised by beggars out of their mind! (17) Now please accept for yourself a husband that indeed is suitable, a first class noble able to fulfill all your wishes in this life and the next. (18) S'is'upâla, S'âlva, Jarâsandha, Dantavakra and other kings all hate Me, o beautiful thighs, and so does your elder brother Rukmî. (19) In order to dispel of those, who are blinded by the intoxication of their strength, the pride and arrogance have I married you o good one; We did that to remove the power from the wicked [see also B.G. 4: 7]. (20) We indifferent about a home and the body really do not really care for wives, children and wealth; We, free from any endeavoring, remain completely satisfied within Ourselves like a light existing for itself does.'

(21) S'rî S'uka said: 'The Supreme Lord, saying this much as the destroyer of the pride of she who as His beloved thought herself inseparable, then stopped. (22) From the Master of the Lords of the Three worlds, her own Beloved, had she, the goddess, never before heard such an unpleasant thing, and with the fear growing in her heart started she, trembling with a terrible anxiety, to sob [see S'rî S'rî S'ikshâshthaka verse 6 &7]. (23) With her most delicate foot glowing red of her nails scratching the earth, and with her tears smearing the makeup of her eyes and sprinkling the red kunkuma powder on her breasts, froze she, face downward, with her speech checked by her extreme sorrow. (24) Of her great grief, fear and anguish not thinking clearly anymore, slipped her bangles and fan from her hand and fell, with her mind disrupted swooning, her body suddenly to the ground with her hair scattering, like she was a plantain tree blown over by the wind [see rasa]. (25) Seeing what, not being understood, the full import of His joking meant to the bond of divine love of His beloved, felt the Supreme Lord, merciful Krishna, sorry for her. (26) Stepping down from the bed picked He, with four arms, her quickly up and wiped He, gathering her hair, her face with His lotus hand. (27-28) Wiping her tear-filled eyes and breasts smeared by her tears, put He, o King, His arm around her who chaste had no other object of desire. The Master, the Expert in Pacification, consoled compassionately her who, so pitiable with her mind confounded of His clever joking, had not deserved this with the Goal of the Pure Ones. (29) The Supreme Lord said: 'O Vaidarbhî, don't be unhappy with Me, I know you're fully dedicated to Me, My dearest, I acted in jest to hear what you would say. (30) I so wanted to see the face of love with lips trembling in agitation, glances cast from the corners of reddish eyes and beautiful brows knit together. (31) To spend time joking with one's beloved is indeed for a mundane householder the greatest thing to achieve in family life, o timid one of temperament.'

(32) S'rî S'uka said: 'She, Vaidarbhî, o King, thus completely pacified by the Supreme Lord, understanding His words to be jocular gave up her fear of being rejected by her Beloved. (33) Bashfully with a charming smile looking the Supreme Lord in the face addressed she, o descendant of Bharata, with affectionate glances the Best of All Men. (34) S'rî Rukminî said: 'Well, so be it with this what You said o Lotus-eyed One; who would I, unequal to the Supreme Lord, be compared to the Almighty One who takes pleasure in His own glory, to the Controller, the Supreme Lord of the Three [principal deities] - what is the position of me in being someone whose feet because of her material qualities are held by fools? (35) True, You did, o Urukrama [Lord of the Greater Order], as if You'd be afraid of the modes, lay Yourself down in the ocean, always in the pure awareness of the Supreme Soul battling against the badness of the material senses and have, just as Your servants, rejected the position of a king  as being of blind ignorance [see also S'rî S'rî Shadgosvâmî-ashthaka verse four and S'rî S'rî S'ikshâshthaka verse 4]. (36) For sages who relish the honey of Your lotuslike feet is Your path, that for animals in a human form for sure is impossible to comprehend, not quite clear because - [so one may wonder] - is it really so that they, who otherworldly present themselves with activities in service of the Supreme Controller [of Time], o All-powerful One, are following You [as a person]? (37) You indeed are without possessions, You beyond Whom there is nothing and to Whom even the enjoyers of tribute headed by Brahmâ pay tribute; persons materially satisfied do, blinded by their status, not know You as their death, but to the great enjoyers are You the One most dear, as they are to You [see also 1.7: 10]. (38) You indeed are the ultimate goal comprising all the goals of human life, You are the very Self longing for Whom intelligent persons discard everything; Your association, o Omnipotent one, is appropriate to them and not to a man and woman in lust being happy and unhappy. (39) You, the Supreme Soul of all the Worlds giving away Your Self, of Whose prowess speak the sages who gave up on the staff [of wandering, becoming Paramahamsas, see 5.1*], have thus by me been chosen in rejection of those masters of heaven, born on the lotus [Brahmâ] and ruling existence [S'iva], whose aspirations are destroyed by the force of Time generated from Your eyebrows. What then would my interest be in others? (40) How foolish were the words You used about taking shelter in the ocean out of fear, o Gadâgraja, You who by twanging Your S'ârnga drove back the kings in taking me, Your proper tribute, away the way a lion snatches his share away from the animals [see also jalpa 10.47: 12-21]. (41) For want of You have the kings Anga [father of Vena, 4.13: 47], Vainya [Prithu, 4.23], Jâyanta [Bharata, 6.7: 11], Nâhusha [Yayâti, 9.19], Gaya [15.15: 6-7] and others abandoning their crown, their absolute sovereignty over their kingdoms, entered the forest, o Lotus-eyed One; how could they, fixed on Your path in this world, be of trepidation? (42) What woman would take shelter of another man, once having smelled the by the saints described aroma of Your lotus feet where Lakshmî resides and that for all people bestow liberation; what mortal woman with the insight to ascertain what's best for her, would not take You seriously as the Abode of All Qualities, and go for one who is always in great fear [of his false ego]? (43) For Him, You Yourself, have I chosen as the Ultimate Master and Supreme Soul of All Worlds to fulfill our desires in this life and the next [see last verse S'rî S'rî S'ikshâshthaka]; may there for me who wandered on different paths be the shelter of Your feet which, indeed approaching their worshiper, award with liberation from the untrue. (44) Let the kings You mentioned, o Acyuta, be of those women in whose homes they are like asses, oxen, dogs, cats and slaves and whose ears never came close to the core of You Who vex Your enemies; You Who are sung and discussed in the scholarly assemblies of Mrida [the gracious one or S'iva] and Viriñca [the pure one beyond passion or Brahmâ]. (45) The woman who's not smelling the honey of Your lotus feet has a totally bewildered idea; she worships as her partner a living corpse covered by skin, whiskers, bodily hair, nails and head-hair with inside flesh, bones, blood, worms, stool, mucus, bile and air. (46) Let there be, o lotus-eyed one, my steady attraction to the feet of You who are more taking pleasure in the True Self than in me, You who for the increase of this universe assume an abundance in passion and with Your glance in that looking at me indeed show us the greatest mercy [see also 10.53: 2]. (47) Factually I don't consider Your words false o Killer of Madhu, it is sure often so that with a maiden [as I with the kings] the attraction raises as it once happened to Ambâ [daughter of the king of Kâs'î attracted to S'âlva, see Mahâbhârata and note 9.22: 20*]. (48) A promiscuous woman is even being married attracted to newer and newer men; being intelligent should one not keep such an unfaithful woman because one staying attached to her then will have fallen in two ways [in this as well as in the next life, see also 9.14: 36].'

(49) The Supreme Lord said: 'All that you replied is correct indeed; what I have said fooling you, o princess, was for My want of hearing you speak on this, o saintly lady! (50) Whatever benedictions you hanker for in order to be freed from lust, o fair one, are there, o auspicious one, always for you who indeed are exclusively devoted to Me. (51) O sinless one, I've seen your pure love and adherence in vows to the husband; as far as words could upset you, could your mind attached to Me, not be diverted. (52) Those falling for civil status who worship Me with penances and adherence to vows, are, lusty of nature, bewildered by the illusory energy of Me, the Controller of the Final Beatitude. (53) O reservoir of love, for those who with obtaining Me, the Treasure of Emancipation, not as fortunate desire from Me, the Master of that, only the material treasures that are there even available for persons living in hell, is it, because they are obsessed with sense gratification, [then also] hell what suits them best [see also 3.32, and 7.5: 32]. (54) Fortunately, o mistress of the house, were you rendering the constant faithful service to Me that gives liberation from a material existence, the service which is most difficult for especially tricky women with bad intentions, who care for the breath of their own life only and delight in cutting off [relations]. (55) In my palaces can I find no wife as loving as you, o respectful one; you who at the time of her own marriage disregarded the kings who had arrived; you by whom, having heard the true stories, a brahmin carrier was sent to Me with a confidential message. (56) When your brother was disfigured being defeated in battle [10.54] and on the appointed day of the marriage ceremony [of Aniruddha, her grandson, see next chapter] got killed during a gambling match, you suffered unbearable sorrow from Us, but afraid of separation you didn't say a word and by that were We conquered by you. (57) When, with the messenger sent with the most confidential bidding to obtain My person, I was delayed, wanted you, thinking this world all empty, to give up this body that wouldn't be there for the service of anyone else [see 10.53: 22-25]; may you always be that way [of fortitude] with Us rejoicing in response.'

(58) S'rî S'uka said: 'This way in conjugal conversations imitating the human world took the Supreme Lord pleasure in enjoying Himself with Ramâ. (59) Similarly behaving like a householder in the residences of the other queens, did the Almighty Lord and Spiritual master of All the Worlds carry out the duties of a family man.'  

Footnotes:

* The Sanskrit word used here is setu: it means bridge, dam, boundary limit, thus in this context His guidance, religion, rule and law.

** Spoken by S'rî Parâs'ara in the Vishnu Purâna there is, so S'rîla S'rîdhara Svâmî reminds us, a verse confirming this one:

devatve deva-deheyam
manushyatve ca mânushî
vishnor dehânurûpâm vai
karoty eshâtmanas tanum

"When the Lord appears as a demigod, she [the goddess of fortune] takes the form of a demigoddess, and when He appears as a human being, she takes a humanlike form. Thus the body she assumes matches the one Lord Vishnu takes."  

 

 

Chapter 61

Lord Balarâma Slays Rukmî at Aniruddha's Wedding

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'Each of the wives of Krishna gave birth to ten sons no less than their Father in all His personal opulence. (2) Never seeing Acyuta leaving their palaces considered every one of the princesses herself the one most dear; the women didn't know the truth about Him. (3) Fully enchanted by the Supreme Lord His face beautiful as the whorl of a lotus, His long arms, His eyes and loving glances, witty approach and charming talks could the women, with their appeal, not conquer the mind of the One All-powerful. (4) In spite of their romantic signs beamed from their arched brows, hidden looks and coy smiles, so enchanting displaying their intentions, were the sixteen thousand wives by their arrows of Cupid and other means not able to agitate the senses [of Krishna]. (5) These women this way obtaining as their spouse the Lord of Ramâ, relating to whom not even Lord Brahmâ and the other gods know the means to attain, partook eagerly anticipating for the ever-fresh intimate association with pleasure, smiles and glances in the incessant and increasing loving attraction [as in 10.59: 44]. (6) Though having hundreds of maidservants were they, [personally] approaching Him, offering a seat, being of first-class worship, washing His feet, serving with betelnut, giving massages and fanning Him, with fragrances, garlands, dressing His hair, arranging His bed, bathing and presenting gifts to Him, of service to the Almighty Lord [as in 10.59: 45]. (7) Of those [16008 **] wives of Krishna previously mentioned who each had ten sons there were eight principal queens of whom I'll recite their sons headed by Pradyumna.

(8-9) By the Lord begotten in Rukminî [see 10.54: 60] there were, no way inferior to Him, [with Pradyumna first] Cârudeshna, Sudeshna and the powerful Cârudeha; Sucâru, Cârugupta, Bhadracâru and another one called Cârucandra as well as Vicâru and Câru, the tenth. (10-12) The ten sons of Sathyabhâmâ [10.56: 44] were Bhânu, Subhânu, Svarbhânu, Prabhânu, Bhânumân and Candrabhânu; as also Brihadbhânu, the eight one Atibhânu and S'rîbhânu and Pratibhânu [bhânu means lustre, splendor]. Sâmba, Sumitra, Purujit, S'atajit and Sahasrajit; Vijaya and Citraketu, Vasumân, Dravida and Kratu were the sons of Jâmbavatî [10.56: 32]. It were indeed these ones headed by Sâmba who were their Father's favorites [see also 7.1: 2 & 12]. (13) Vîra, Candra and As'vasena; Citragu, Vegavân, Vrisha, Âma, S'anku, Vasu and the so very beautiful Kunti were the sons of Nâgnajitî [or Satyâ, see 10.58: 55]. (14) S'ruta, Kavi, Vrisha, Vîra, Subâhu, the one called Bhadra, S'ânti, Dars'a and Pûrnamâsa were, with Somaka as the youngest, the sons of Kâlindî [10.58: 23]. (15) Praghosha, Gâtravân, Simha, Bala, Prabala, and Ûrdhaga were with Mahâs'akti, Saha, Oja and Aparâjita the sons of Mâdrâ [see *]. (16) Vrika, Harsha, Anila, Gridhra, Vardhana, Unnâda, Mahâmsa, Pâvana and Vahni were with Kshudhi the sons of Mitravindâ [10.58: 31]. (17) Sangrâmajit, Brihatsena, S'ûra, Praharana, Arijit, Jaya and Subhadra were together with Vâma, Âyur and Satyaka the sons of Bhadrâ [10.58: 56]. (18) Dîptimân, Tâmratapta and others were the sons of Lord Krishna and Rohinî [*]. O King, from Pradyumna was, as He was living in the city of Bhojakatha [Rukmî's domain] then, begotten in Rukmavatî, the daughter of Rukmî, the greatly powerful Aniruddha born [see also 4.24: 35-36]. (19) Of these sons and grandsons were born tens of millions, o King, for the mothers of the descendants of Krishna numbered sixteen thousand.'

(20) The king said: 'How could Rukmî give his daughter to the son of his Enemy in marriage? Defeated by Krishna in battle awaited he the opportunity to kill Him. Please explain to me, o learned one, how this marriage between the two enemies could be arranged. (21) Yogis [like you] are perfectly able to see the past, the present, as well as what hasn't happened yet, things far away, things blocked by obstacles and things beyond the senses.'

(22) S'rî S'uka said: 'At her svayamvara ceremony did she [Rukmavatî] choose the Cupid manifest [that was Pradyumna] who with a single chariot, in battle defeating the assembled kings, took her away. (23) Rukmî, even though he always thought of the enmity with Krishna who had insulted him [10.54: 35], granted, in order to please his sister [Rukminî], his daughter his nephew. (24) The young large-eyed daughter of Rukminî, Cârumatî, married, so is said, o King, the son of Kritavarmâ named Balî. (25) Rukmî, despite of his being bound in enmity to the Lord, gave to his daughter's son, Aniruddha, his granddaughter named Rocanâ; aware that the marriage was against the dharma [of not siding as such with the enemy], preferred he, constrained by the ropes of affection, to please his sister with that marriage. (26) To the occasion of that happy event, o King, went Rukminî, Balarâma and Kes'ava [Krishna], Sâmba, Pradyumna and others, to the city of Bhojakatha.

(27-28) After the ceremon spoke some arrogant kings led by the ruler of Kalinga to Rukmî: 'You should defeat Balarâma with a game of dice. Really not that good at it is He, o King, nevertheless greatly fascinated by it', thus they said and consequently inviting Balarâma played Rukmî a game of dice with Him. (29) In that match accepting a wager of first a hundred, then a thousand and then a ten thousand [gold coins] was it Rukmî though who won, whereupon the king of Kalinga loudly laughed at Balarâma baring his teeth freely. This could the Carrier of the Plow not forgive him. (30) Rukmî next accepted a bet of a hundred thousand which then by Balarâma was won, but Rukmî, resorting to deception, said 'I've won!'

(31) With a mind boiling like the ocean on the day of a full moon accepted the handsome Balarâma, whose naturally reddish eyes were burning with anger, a wager of a hundred million. (32) Balarâma fairly won that game also but Rukmî again resorting to deceit said: 'It's won by me. May these witnesses confirm that!'

(33) Then a voice spoke from the sky: 'It indeed was Balarâma who won the wager, the words Rukmî spoke are a blunt lie!'

(34) Discarding that voice did the prince of Vidarbha, urged on by the wicked kings on a crash course, in ridicule say to Sankarshana: (35) 'You cowherds indeed are good at roaming in the forest, not at playing dice; to sport with dice and arrows is for kings, not for the likes of you!'

(36) This way in the auspicious assembly [of the marriage] by Rukmî insulted and being the laughingstock of the kings present, raised He angered His club and struck He him dead. (37) Quickly seizing the fleeing king of Kalinga in his tenth step, knocked He in rage out the teeth he had bared in laughing [see also 4.5: 21]. (38) Other kings tormented by Balarâma's club got their arms, legs and heads broken and fled terrified drenched in blood. (39) The fact that his brother-in-law, Rukmî, had been slain, o King, was by the Lord, afraid to break the bond of affection with Rukminî and Balarâma, neither applauded nor protested. (40) Then, headed by Râma, placed the descendants of Das'ârha the groom together with His bride on His chariot and set they, of whom under the shelter of Madhusûdana all purposes had been fulfilled, off from Bhojakatha to head for Kus'asthalî [another name of Dvârakâ].'  

Footnote:

* This one called Mâdrâ is the eighth principal wife of Krishna not mentioned before; she is the daughter of the ruler of Madra, called Brihatsena, and also known as Lakshmanâ. From the Bhâgavatam knowing her story as told in 10.83: 17, is it clear that she belonged to the eight queens He married before. Thus there were the 16008 of them. Rohinî [not to confuse with Balarâma's mother who has the same name], not to be considered as a principal wife, seems to have been the one heading the sixteen thousand princesses. So taking Mâdrâ as the cause for speaking of 16001 wives in stead of 16000, do we in sum have: 1 Rukminî, 2 Jâmbavatî, 3 Satyabhâmâ, 4 Kâlindî, 5 Mitravindâ, 6 Satyâ (Nâgnajitî), 7 Bhadrâ and 8 Mâdrâ (Lakshmanâ) and then the sixteen thousand headed by Rohinî who came second [see also footnote 10.59** and the list of them in 10.83].

 

Chapter 62

Ûshâ in Love and Aniruddha Apprehended

(1) The honorable king said: 'Bâna's daughter named Ûshâ ['dawn'] married the best of the Yadus [Aniruddha] and because of that took a great and terrible battle place between the Lord and S'ankara [S'iva as 'the auspicious']; o great yogi, I give it to you to explain all this.'

(2) S'rî S'uka said: 'Bâna ['arrow'], the eldest son of the one hundred sons born from the semen of Bali ['gift'] - the great soul who donated the earth to the Lord who had appeared in the form of Vâmana [see 8.19-22] -, was, respectable and magnanimous, intelligent and truthful in his vows, always fixed in his devotion for Lord S'iva. In the charming city known as S'onita ['resin'] made he his kingdom, where the immortals served him as if they were menial servants. They did so because in the past S'ambhu ['the beneficent' or S'iva] had been pleased by him as he, having a thousands arms, had played musical instruments while Mrida [S'iva as 'the gracious'] was dancing. (3) He, the great lord and master of all created beings, the compassionate giver of shelter to his devotees, rewarded him with a benediction to his choice and he chose for him [S'iva] as the guardian of his city. (4) He, intoxicated by his strength, with a helmet bright as the sun once present at his side said to Giris'a [S'iva as the lord of the mountain] touching his lotusfeet: (5) 'I bow down to you Mahâdeva [great god], o controller and spiritual master of the worlds who like a tree from heaven fulfills all the wishes of the people who feel unfulfilled. (6) The one thousand arms you gave me have become but a burden to me and except for you do I in the three worlds not find an equal opponent. (7) With my arms itching to pulverize mountains I went to fight the elephants of all directions o primeval one, but terrified of me they all ran away.'

(8) Hearing that said the great lord incensed: 'Your flag will be broken when, o fool, your pride is vanquished in battle with someone equal to me.' (9) Thus addressed went the poorminded one filled with delight home, o king, not so intelligent awaiting his heroism to be crushed as the lord of the mountain had predicted [compare 2.1: 4].

(10) His virgin daughter named Ûshâ in a dream had an amorous encounter with the son of Pradyumna while she never before had seen or heard of the lover she thus had found [see *]. (11) She, not seeing him [anymore] in her dream, disturbed rose to her feet while she was in the midst of her girlfriends and felt greaty embarrassed hearing herself say 'Where are you my lover?' (12) The daughter Citralekhâ ['the fine sketch-artist'] of a minister of Bâna named Kumbhânda, thereupon as a friend of hers most curiously questioned her companion Ûshâ. (13) 'Who is it you're looking for o beautiful eyebrows, and what is it that you expect from him, for we as yet haven't seen anyone winning your hand o princess.'

(14) 'In my dream I saw a certain man with a dark complexion, lotuslike eyes, yellow garments and mighty arms - one of the kind stirring a woman's heart. (15) Him I am seeking, that lover who made me drink the honey of His lips and who, gone elsewhere, has left me, hankering for Him, in an ocean of distress.'

(16) Citralekhâ said: 'I'll take away your distress; if He's to be found anywhere in the three worlds, I'll bring Him to you, that husband-to-be, that thief who stole your heart - please point Him out to me.'

(17) Thus having spoken she accurately drew for her the demigod and the heavenly singer, the one perfected, the venerable one and the lowlife serpent, the demon, the magician, the supernatural and the human being. (18-19) Of the humans she drew Vrishnis like S'ûrasena, Vasudeva, Balarâma and Krishna but seeing Pradyumna Ûshâ became bashful and with Aniruddha being drawn she bent down her head in embarrassment o great lord, and said smiling: 'That's Him, that one here!' (20) Citralekhâ, the yoginî, recognizing Him as Krishna's grandson [Aniruddha] then went, o King, by the higher spheres [the mystical way] to Dvârakâ, the city under the protection of Krishna. (21) Pradyumna's son asleep on a fine bed did she, using her yogic power, take from there to S'onitapura in order to show her girlfriend her Beloved. (22) Upon seeing Him, that most beautiful man, lit her face up and had she a good time together with the son of Pradyumna in her private quarters, a place forbidden to the sight of men. (23-24) With priceless garments, garlands, fragrances, lamps, sitting places and such; with beverages, liquid and solid food and with words she worshiped Him in faithful service. And thus continuously keeping Him hidden in the maiden quarters lost He, because of her greatly increasing affection, the count of days, the way He in His senses was diverted by Ûshâ. (25-26) She thus enjoyed by the Yadu-hero in breaking her vow [of chastity] could not conceal the symptoms of her extreme happiness that were noticed by her governesses who reported [to Bâna, her father]: 'O King, we've noticed that your daughter is of the for an unmarried girl faulty conduct that besmirches the family. (27) Well guarded by us within the palace and never having left, o master, have we no idea how she, hidden from the looks of men, could have been deflowered.'

(28) Bâna upon hearing of the defilement of his daughter most disturbed quickly headed for the maiden quarters where he upon his arrival saw the most eminent of the Yadus. (29-30) He stood perplexed to behold sitting in front of her that son of Cupid, the exclusive beauty of all the worlds, dark-skinned in yellow clothes, with His lotuseyes, mighty arms, earrings and locks, smiling with the glow and glances from His adorned face, as He played dice with His all-auspicious sweetheart, of whom the red of the kunkuma of her breasts was smeared all over the by her manufactured springtime jasmine garland that hung between His arms. (31) Seeing him entering surrounded by many an armed guard raised the Sweet Lord His club made of muru [a type of iron] to stand firm, ready to strike like death personified with the rod of punishment. (32) They, closing in from all sides to apprehend Him, were by Him struck like a dominant boar faced with a pack of dogs so that they all being hit ran to escape from the palace with their heads, arms and legs crushed. (33) But as He was striking down the guards, did the son of Bali furiously himself capture Him with the [mystical] snake-ropes [of Varuna, see also 8.21: 28]. Ûshâ then was utterly defeated and discouraged, overwhelmed by sorrow crying bitter tears when she heard of the arrest.'

* Here S'rîla Vis'vanâtha Cakravartî Thhâkura quotes the following verses from the Vishnu Purâna, which explain Ûshâ's dream: 'O brâhmana, when Ûshâ, the daughter of Bâna, happened to see Pârvatî playing with her husband, Lord S'ambhu, Ûshâ intensely desired to experience the same feelings. At that time Goddess Gaurî [Pârvatî], who knows everyone's heart, told the sensitive young girl, 'don't be so disturbed! You will have a chance to enjoy with your own husband.' Hearing this, Ûshâ thought to herself, 'But when? And who will my husband be?' In response, Pârvatî addressed her once more: 'The man who approaches you in your dream on the twelfth lunar day of the bright fortnight of the month Vais'âkha will become your husband, O princess.'

 

 Chapter 63  

The Fever in Conflict and Bâna Defeated

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'Thus not seeing Aniruddha, o son of Bharata, passed His relatives in constant lamentation the four months of the rainy season. (2) Hearing from Nârada the news of what He had done and that He had been captured, went the Vrishnis, who had Krishna as their worshipable deity, to S'onitapura. (3-4) The best of the Sâtvatas knowing Pradyumna, Yuyudhâna [Sâtyaki], Gada, Sâmba, and Sârana; Nanda, Upananda, Bhadra and others, assembled under the lead of Râma and Krishna with twelve akshauhinîs and besieged on all sides Bâna's city completely. (5) Seeing the city gardens, the city walls and watchtowers ravaged appeared he, fuming with anger, on the scene to meet them with an army just as big. (6) Bhagavân S'iva appeared from the city on the back of Nandi, his bull, together with his son [Kârtikeya, his general] and was accompanied by the Pramathas [his different mystic attendants] to fight against Râma and Krishna at the side of Bâna. (7) What took place, o King, was a tumultuous, astonishing and hair-raising fight of Krishna against S'ankara and Pradyumna against Kârtikeya. (8) Kumbhânda and Kûpakarna had a fight with Balarâma, Sâmba with the son of Bâna and Sâtyaki with Bâna himself. (9) Headed by Lord Brahmâ came to witness in their celestial vehicles the leaders of the godly, the sages, the perfected and the venerable; the singers and dancing girls of heaven as well as the spirits. (10-11) Discharging sharp-pointed arrows from His bow, the S'ârnga, drove S'auri [Krishna] away the Bhûtas [spirits of the dead], the Pramathas [mystic spirits], the Guhyakas [the wealth-keepers of Kuvera], the Dâkinîs [female imps of Kâlî] the Yâtudhânas [practicioners of black magic], Vetâlas [vampires], the Vinâyakas [demons of education, distracters, humiliaters], the Pretas [ghosts, hobgoblins], the Mâtâs [demoniac mothers], the Pis'âcas [child-demons], the Kushmândas [meditation-disturbers, diseasing demons] and the Brahmâ-râkshasas [fallen brahmins as in 9.9: 25] who followed S'ankara. (12) The holder of the trident [Pinâkî or S'iva] using different types of weapons against the Wielder of S'ârnga saw them neutralized with befitting counterweapons; they couldn't daunt the Carrier of S'ârnga. (13) He used a brahmâstra against a brahmâstra, a mountain-weapon against a wind-weapon, a rain-weapon against a fire-weapon and His nârâyanâstra [His personal weapon] against S'iva's [personal] pâs'upatâstra [the 'beaststrap'-weapon]. (14) Then bewildering lord S'iva making him yawn with a yawning weapon, struck S'auri Bâna's army with His sword, club and arrows. (15) Kârtikeya distressed by Pradyumna's arrows raining from all sides, fled on his peakcock-carrier from the battlefield, with blood streaming from his limbs. (16) Kumbhânda and Kûpakarna tormented by the club [of Râma] fell and their armies, whose leaders were killed, fled in all directions.

(17) Bâna seeing his troops torn apart, left Sâtyaki whom he was fighting aside, crossed with his chariot the battlefield and most furiously attacked Krishna. (18) Bâna, in a frenzy because of the fighting, with fixing two arrows on each, simultaneously bent the complete of his fivehundred bows. (19) These bows were by Bhagavân all at once split and after hitting the chariot, the horses and the charioteer, blew He His conch shell. (20) [then] Hoping to save her son's life, positioned his mother, named Kotharâ, herself naked, with her hair loosened, in front of Krishna. (21) When Lord Gadâgraja then turned His face away not to look at the naked woman, took Bâna without his chariot and with his bow broken, the opportunity to escape into the city. (22) But with S'iva's followers driven away rushed Jvara, the [personification of S'iva's hot] fever with three heads and three feet, forward to the descendant of Dâs'arha like setting fire to the ten directions [see *]. (23) Lord Nârâyana, seeing him, thereupon released His fever [of extreme cold instead] so that the two Jvaras of Mâhes'vara and Vishnu came to fight each other. (24) The one of Mâhes'vara had to cry out in pain being tormented by the force of the one of Vishnu and not finding a safe refuge anywhere started Mâhes'vara's Jvara thirsting for protection next devout to praise Hrishîkes'a with folded hands. (25) The Jvara said: 'I bow down to You, the Supreme Lord Unlimited in His Potencies, the Soul of All of Pure Conciousness, the Cause to the totality of the universe it's creation, dissolution and maintenance; You the Absolute Truth of Perfect Peace to whom the Vedas indirectly refer. (26) I approach You for Your being the negation of this mâyâ of Time, fate, the workload of karma, the propensities to it, the subtle elements, the field that is the body, the life-air, the sense of I, the transformations [the eleven senses] and the aggregate of all of this [as the subtle body, the linga], that is there in a constant flow of seed and sprout. (27) You with various intentions indeed are there to take up missions of divine engagement [lîlâs] to maintain the godly, the sages, and the codes of conduct in the world and put to death the ones who left the path and live by violence; Your incarnating like this is there to relieve the earth of its burden [see also B.G. 9: 29 and 4: 8]. (28) I am tormented by this most terrible fever of Your power that unbearably cold yet is burning, for indeed, as long as the embodied souls do not serve the soles of Your feet must they suffer, continually being bound in desires.'

(29) The Supreme Lord said: 'O three-headed one, I am satisfied with you, may your fear raised by My fever leave you; for anyone who remembers our conversation will there be no reason to fear you.'

(30) Thus addressed bowed the Mâhes'vara's Jvara down to Acyuta and went away, but Bâna, riding his chariot, came forward with the intent to fight Janârdana. (31) Thereupon, o King, with his thousand arms carrying numerous weapons, released the demon, fuming of anger, arrows at Him Whose Weapon was the Cakra. (32) Of him, over and over hurling weapons, cut the Supreme Lord with the razor-sharp edge of His disc the arms as if they were the branches of a tree. (33) As Bâna's arms were being severed, approached the great lord Bhava [- of existence, S'iva] out of compassion for his devotee and spoke he to the Wielder of the Disc. (34) S'rî Rudra said: 'You alone are the Absolute Truth, the Light of the Supreme hidden in the lingual expressions of the Absolute [of the Veda]; they whose hearts are spotless see You, pure as the blue sky. (35-36) You with the atmosphere as Your navel, fire as Your face, water as Your semen, heaven as Your head, the directions as Your sense of hearing, the earth as Your foot, the moon as Your mind; Whose sight is the sun, Whose awareness of Self I am, with the ocean as Your abdomen and Indra as Your arm; You with the plants as the hair on Your body, the clouds as the hair on Your head, with Viriñca as Your intelligence, with the Prajâpati as Your genitals, Whose heart is the religion; Your good self indeed art the Purusha from whom all the worlds originated. (37) You of an unbounded glory are in this descent there to defend the dharma to the benefit of the Complete of the Living Being and we all manifest and develop enlightened by You the seven worlds [see dvîpa]. (38) You are the Original Supreme Person without a second, the Transcendental Self-manifesting Cause without a prior cause, the Ruler; yet are You, for the sake of the full manifestation of Your qualities, just as well perceived in the various transformations [of the different lifeforms, gods and avatâras] of Your illusory potency. (39) Just as the sun in its own shade hidden from sight illumines the forms visible, do You, o All-mighty One, similarly self-luminous, illumine the qualities of the covering modes of matter for the beings with these qualities. (40) Those who, fully entangled in their respect for their children, wife, a home and so on, in their intelligence are bewildered by mâyâ do, in the ocean of misery, [alternately] rise to the surface and sink [again, see B.G. 9: 21]. (41) By the grace of God attaining this human world is he, who uncontrolled in his senses is not willing to honor Your feet, lamentable as he is indeed someone who fools himself. (42) The mortal being who in opposition for the sake of the sense-objects rejects You, his True Self and dearmost Guide, eats the poison and avoids the nectar. (43) I, Brahmâ as well as the demigods and the sages have a consciousness that is pure in wholeheartedly being surrendered to You, the Master, the dearmost Self. (44) Let us be of worship for the Godhead of You, the cause of the rise, the maintenance and the demise of the Living Being that is the Universe; He who perfectly in peace equipoised is the unique, unequalled Friend, True Self and worshipable Lord of all the worlds and all the souls, and the shelter for putting an end to a material life. (45) This one [Bâna] is my favored and dearest follower, by me awarded with fearlessness, o Lord, please grant him Your grace therefore, the way You were also of mercy with the master of the Daityas [Prahlâda].'

(46) The Supreme Lord said: 'What you've told us, o great lord, We'll do, I fully concur with that what you determined to be your pleasure. (47) He, this son of Virocana [Bali], will be spared by Me, for I gave Prahlâda the benediction: 'Your descendants will not be killed by Me' [see 7.10: 21]. (48) To subdue his pride were his arms severed by Me and was the huge military force slain which had become a burden to the earth. (49) The Asura left with four of his arms, will, not aging and being immortal, of you be a principal associate who has nothing to fear on any account.'

(50) Thus attaining freedom from fear bowed the Asura his head down to Krishna, placed he the son of Pradyumna with His wife on His chariot and led he them forward. (51) He [Krishna] putting Him and His wife, ornamented and with fine clothes, in front, then with the permission of S'iva left, being surrounded by an akshauhinî. (52) Entering His capital fully decorated with flags, arches of victory and with the streets and crossroads sprinkled, was He respectfully with the resounding of conch shells, side drums and kettledrums welcomed by the people of the city, His relatives and the twiceborn. (53) For the one who, rising at dawn, remembers thus the victory of Krishna in the battle with S'ankara, will there be no defeat.'

Footnote:

* Here S'rîla Vis'vanâtha Cakravartî Thhâkura quotes the following description of the S'iva-jvara: "The terrible S'iva-jvara had three legs, three heads, six arms and nine eyes. Showering ashes, he resembled Yamarâja at the time of universal annihilation."

 

Chapter 64

On Stealing from a Brahmin: King Nriga a Chameleon

(1) The son of Vyâsa said: 'One day [in their youth], o King, went the Yadu boys Sâmba, Pradyumna, Câru, Bhânu, Gada and others to a park to play. (2) Playing for a long time there looked they, being thirsty, for water and discovered they in a dry well an amazing creature. (3) There they saw a chameleon as big as a mountain and with a mind filled with wonder about it tried they, moved by compassion, to lift it up. (4) Attaching straps of leather and twisted ropes failed the boys to lift the creature out of the well and so reported they it excitedly to Krishna. (5) The Lotus-eyed Supreme Lord, the Maintainer of the Universe, taking a look saw it and picked it with His left hand easily up. (6) Being touched by the hand of Uttamas'loka, was immediately the chameleon form given up for the one of a heavenly being that was beautiful with a complexion of molten gold and wonderful ornaments, clothes and garlands. (7) Even though He was very well aware of what had led to this situation asked Mukunda, so that the people in general might know: 'Who are you, o fortunate one, from your excellent appearance I dare say you're an exalted demigod! (8) What action brought you, o good soul, to this condition that you certainly did not deserve; please tell Us, eager to know, all about yourself - that is, if you think it's the right time to speak about it here.'

(9) S'rî S'uka said: 'The king who thus was questioned by Krishna whose forms are unlimited, with his helmet as brilliant as the sun bowed down to Mâdhava and spoke to Him. (10) Nriga said: 'I, the ruler of man named Nriga [see 9.1: 11-12, 9.2: 17], am a son of [S'râddhadeva Manu and a younger brother of] Ikshvâku, o Master, maybe You've heard that I am counted among the men of charity. (11) What indeed would be unknown to You o Master, Witness of the Mind of all Beings, Whose vision is undisturbed by time; nevertheless I'll speak as You wish. (12) As many grains of sand there are on earth, as many stars there are in the sky or as many raindrops there are in a shower of rain, that many cows have I donated. (13) I gave cows complete with milk, being young, sweet, of beauty and endowed with other qualities; brown and fair, together with their calves, adorned with gold on their horns, silver on their hooves, fine cloth and garlands. (14-15) I, of pious works and performing worship with fire sacrifices, was of charity to the by me nicely decorated saintly, young, exceptional brahmins, dedicated to the truth, who are well-known for their austerity and vast knowledge of the Vedas and who with their families in need were of good qualities and character: I gave them cows, land, gold, houses, horses and elephants; marriageable girls with maidservants, sesame seeds, silver, bedding and clothing; jewels, furniture and chariots. (16) I unknowingly, gave of a certain first class dvija [a brahmin not accepting gifts anymore, see 7.11] away to another twice-born soul a cow, which having wandered off had mingled with my herd. (17) As the cow was led away was she spotted by her master who said: 'She's mine'. But he who had accepted the gift said thereupon: 'Nriga gave this one to me!'

(18) The two learned ones arguing in defense of their own interest said to me: 'You sir, as a giver have been a thief!' When I heard this I fell in perplexity.

(19-20) Embarrassed indeed in my religious duty I supplicated with both the men of learning in saying: 'Please give me this one cow, I'll give you in return a hundred thousand of the best quality! You both, please be of mercy with your servant who was unaware; save me from the danger of falling down into a dirty hell!'

(21) 'I'm not in want at all o King!' thus spoke the owner and went away.

'I'm not interested in all those other cows', said the other one and left.

(22) After this had happened was I by the messengers of Yamarâja taken to his abode and there questioned by the Lord of Death and Retribution [as follows], o God of Gods, o Master of the Universe [see also 5.26: 6, 6.1: 31 and 6.3]. (23) 'Do you first want to face the consequences of your bad deeds, o King, or rather enjoy the merit of your good deeds? As for your good deeds I can see that the shining world as a consequence of what you religiously gave in charity is limitless.'

(24) I thus said: 'I'll first face the load of my bad deeds o Godhead', and so said he: 'Then fall!' and as I was falling, o Master, saw I myself changed into a chameleon! (25) Being Your servant generous towards the brahmins, o Kes'ava, has not even today left the memory of the audience of You that I lost and hanker for [see also 5.8: 28]. (26) How, o Almighty One, can You in person be visible to me; You, the Supreme Soul who meditated by the masters of yoga are visible to the eye of a spotless heart - how, o Adhoks'aja, can I, whose intelligence was blinded by severe troubles, obtain the permission to perceive what is reserved for those whose material life out here is completed? (27-28) O, God of Gods, Master of the Universe, Lord of the Cows, Supreme Personality; o Path Laid out for Man, Master of the Senses, Grace of the Verses, Infallible and Undiminishing One, please permit me to leave, o Krishna, for the world of the gods, o Master; may wherever I reside my consciousness be of the shelter of Your feet! (29) My obeisances unto You the Source of All Beings, the Absolute of the Truth and the Possessor of Unlimited Potencies; I offer the Spiritual Pleasure of His Attraction, Krishna [*], the son of Vasudeva, the Lord of All forms of yoga [all forms of uniting in the consciousness], my respects.'

(30) Thus having spoken and having circumambulated Him got he, after touching His feet with his crown, permission to leave and boarded he, before all humans to see, a most excellent celestial chariot. (31) Krishna, the Supreme Lord, the son of Devakî, the God and Soul of Dharma devoted to the brahmins, addressed His personal associates and was thus of instruction to the royalty in general: (32) 'If even for someone of a greater potency than fire but the little property consumed [stolen or denied] of a brahmin indeed is indigestible, what then to say of kings who imagine themselves to be the Lord? (33) The hâlâhala [that was churned with Mandâra] I do not consider poison because there is an antidote for it [namely S'iva, see 8.7]; what belongs to a brahmin [though] I call real poison [in being misappropriated] because for such a thing there is no counteraction in the world. (34) Poison destroys the one who ingests it and fire is extinguished with water, but the fire that burns with the kindling wood of the belongings of a brahmin burns one's community down to the ground. (35) A brahmin's property enjoyed without permission destroys three generations [in a family line see **], but enjoyed with violence it are [like with governemental action or with corporate interests] ten previous and ten subsequent generations [whose honor will be contaminated, see also 9.8]. (36) Members of the royalty, blinded by royal opulence [see also B.G. 1: 44] do not foresee their own downfall in hell childishly hankering for the property of a good natured brahmin. (37-38) As many particles of dust were touched by the teardrops of generous brahmins who for the sake of their beloved cry over the means of support that were stolen from them, that many years will the kings and the other members of the royal family, who as usurpers of the brahmin's share failed to control, be cooked in the hell called Kumbhîpâka [5.26: 13]. (39) He then who steals what a brahmin owns, whether it was given by oneself or someone else, is for sixty thousand years born as a worm in feces. (40) Do not deliver Me the wealth belonging to a brahmin; the desire for it makes people short-lived, brings them defeat and deprives them of the kingdom; it turns them into snakes giving trouble to others. (41) Dear followers, do not be inimical towards a man of learning, not even when he has sinned; even striking you physically time and again or cursing you, should you always offer him your obeisances. (42) The way I take care to bow down always to the ones of learning, should also all of you be of that respect; he who does otherwise qualifies for being punished by Me. (43) The property indeed taken away from a brahmin leads to the downfall of the taker, even done unknowingly as, as we saw, happened to the person of Nriga with the cow of the brahmin.'

(44) After thus having educated the residents of Dvârakâ, entered the Supreme Lord Mukunda, the Purifier of All Worlds, His palace.'

Footnotes:

* In the Mahâbhârata (Udyoga-parva 71.4), is stated to the name of Krishna: "The word krish is the attractive feature of the Lord's existence, and na means 'spiritual pleasure.' When the verb krish is added to na, it becomes krishna, which indicates the Absolute Truth."

** According to S'rîla S'rîdhara Svâmî, does tri-pûrusha, the Sanskrit term used here, refer to oneself, one's sons and one's grandsons.  

 

Chapter 65

Lord Balarâma in Vrindâvana and the Stream Divided

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'O best of the Kurus, the Supreme Lord Balarâma mounted [one day] His chariot eager to see His friends and traveled to Nanda's cowherd village. (2) By the gopas and gopîs, who for a long time had missed Him indeed, was Râma embraced and offering His respects to His parents was He joyfully greeted with prayers: (3) 'O descendant of Das'ârha, please always protect us together with Your younger brother, the Lord of the Universe', and saying this pulling Him close on their laps embraced they Him wetting Him with the water from their eyes. (4-6) Next He headed for the elderly cowherds whom He, taking their hands, greeted with smiles. After having offered Him a comfortable seat so that He could rest a bit and such, gathered they, who had dedicated their all and everything to the service of their lotus-eyed Krishna, around Him and asked they Him, with voices faltering of their love, questions relating to the welfare of their beloved ones. (7) 'O Balarâma are all our relatives well? Do all of You, wives, children and all, still remember us, o Râma? (8) To our fortune was the sinful Kamsa killed and were our relatives freed; thank God found they shelter in a fortress [Dvârakâ] and were our enemies killed and conquered!' (9) Honored to see Râma in their midst asked the gopîs with a smile: 'Is Krishna, the darling of the city women, living happily? (10) Does He still think of His folk, His [foster] father and His mother; will He ever come to visit His mother Himself and does He with His mighty arms remember our enduring service? (11-12) For His sake have we, o Lord, detached ourselves from those who are so difficult to give up: our mothers, fathers, brothers, husbands, children and sisters, o descendant of Das'ârha. With Him suddenly rejecting us and leaving, has He broken with the friendship, but what woman wouldn't believe in Him now she's again being addressed? (13) In what way could those smart city women put faith in the words of Him who so easily has His heart elsewhere and breaks off the contact? They are mistaken about His eloquence and nice smiles because they factually are motivated by lust! (14) But why woud we dilate about Him any longer o gopîs, let's talk about other things; if He wants to pass His time without us, will we do likewise [in trying to live without Him being present. See also 10.47: 47].'

(15) Thus speaking of the laughter, the conversations, the attractive glances and remembering the gait and the loving embrace of S'auri, the women cried. (16) Sankarshana, the Supreme Lord, being an expert in different kinds of conciliation, consoled them with Krishna's confidential messages that touched their hearts. (17) Râma then resided there for the two months of Madhu and Mâdhava [the first two of the vernal equinox], during which He also during the nights brought [amorous] delight to the gopîs [see also 10.15: 8]. (18) In a grove near the Yamunâ [known as S'rîrâma-ghaththa] with by the wind carried the fragrance of kumuda [night-blooming] lotuses, enjoyed He it, bathing in the light of the full moon, to be served by the many women. (19) Sent by Varuna flowed from the hollow of a tree the divine [intoxicating spirit] Vârunî that with its aroma made the entire forest even more fragrant. (20) Balarâma, smelling the fragrance of that honey flow carried over by the wind, sought the place where it could be found and drank from it together with the women. (21) Kettledrums resounded in the sky, the Gandharvas with joy rained down flowers and the sages praised Râma for His heroic deeds. (22) As the singers of heaven sang the glory enjoyed He, beautified by the circle of young women, just like Indra's bull elephant in a herd of females. (23) With His pastimes being sung by the women wandered Halâyudha [Balarâma as 'armed with the plow'] through the forest inebriated with his eyes heavy of the intoxication.

(24-25) With flowers, with one earring, mad with joy and carrying His Vaijayantî garland and with His smiling, lotuslike face covered by beads of perspiration like it were snowflakes, called He for the Yamunâ with the purpose to play in the water, but when the river thereupon ignored His drunken words, was she by Him angrily with the tip of His plow dragged because she didn't come: (26) 'You sinful one do not come, being called by Me, and because you, in disrespect of Me, are moving about as you like, will I, dividing you with My plow in a hundred little streams, make you come!'

(27) Yamunâ thus chided, afraid fallen at His feet, o King, spoke trembling to the Yadu descendant the words [*]: (28) 'Râma, Râma, o mighty armed one, what do I know about the prowess of You by whose single portion [of S'esha] the earth is sustained, o Master of the Universe? (29) Please, o Lord Supreme, let me go, I have surrendered, I wasn't aware of Your status as the Supreme Personality, o Soul of the Universe so compassionate with Your devotees!'

(30) Thus entreated released Balarâma, the Supreme Lord, the Yamunâ and then submerged Himself with the women in the water like He was the king of the elephants with his wives. (31) Having played as He wanted emerging from the water presented Kânti ['the female beauty, the brightness of the moon', a name of Lakshmî] Him a set of blue garments, most valuable ornaments and a splendid necklace. (32) Dressing up with the blue clothes and putting on the golden necklace appeared He, excellently ornamented and anointed, as resplendent as great lord Indra's elephant. (33) Even today are, o King, the currents of the Yamunâ the way they are drawn by Balarâma in His unlimited potency, seen as evidence of His prowess. (34) Thus passed for Râma, who in His mind was enchanted by the exquisite women of the cow-community, all the nights that He enjoyed in Vraja, like a single one.'

Footnote:

 * The paramparâ comments: 'According to S'rîla Jîva Gosvâmî, the goddess who appeared before Lord Balarâma is an expansion of S'rîmatî Kâlindî, one of Lord Krishna's queens in Dvârakâ. S'rîla Jîva Gosvâmî calls her a "shadow" of Kâlindî, and S'rîla Vis'vanâtha Cakravartî confirms that she is an expansion of Kâlindî, not Kâlindî herself. S'rîla Jîva Gosvâmî also gives evidence from S'rî Hari-vams'a - in the statement pratyuvâcârnava-vadhûm - that Goddess Yamunâ is the wife of the ocean. The Hari-vams'a therefore also refers to her as Sâgarânganâ.'

   

 

Chapter 66

The False Vâsudeva Paundraka and His Son Consumed by Their Own Fire

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'With Balarâma gone to Nanda's cowherd village sent the ruler of Karûsha [Paundraka], o King, foolishly thinking 'I am Vâsudeva', a messenger to Krishna. (2) Childishly people had alluded: 'You are Vâsudeva, the Supreme Lord who has descended as the Master of the Universe!', and so he imagined himself to be the Infallible One. (3) Like a boy of little intelligence who by kids was appointed king sent he, being silly, a messenger to Krishna, He whose ways are inscrutable, who resided in Dvârakâ. (4) The envoy arriving in Dvârakâ then in the royal assembly relayed to Krishna Almighty with the Lotuspetal Eyes the message of his king: (5) 'I Vâsudeva, the one and only without a second, have descended to this world with the purpose of showing mercy to the living beings. You however, have to give up Your false title! (6) O Sâtvata, give up my symbols. You carry them out of delusion. You better come to me for shelter; if not so, give me battle instead.'

(7) S'rî S'uka said: 'Hearing that boasting of Paundraka so poor of intelligence, laughed the members of the assembly headed by Ugrasena loudly. (8) The Supreme Lord, after the joking was done, said to the messenger: 'I'll hurl you, o fool, the symbols you so boast about. (9) The shelter of dogs you'll be, o ignoramus, lying dead with that face of yours covered by herons, vultures and vathas all around.'

(10) Thus addressed carried the messenger that insulting reply in full detail over to his master and went Krishna, riding His chariot, to Kâs'î [Vârânasî]. (11) As soon as the mighty warrior Paundraka saw that He was preparing for battle, appeared he from the city joined by two akshauhinîs. (12-14) The Lord saw Paundraka within his wake his friend, the master of Kâs'î, with three akshauhinîs more, o King. He presented himself complete with a conch, a disc, a sword and a club, a S'ârnga and the mark of a S'rîvatsa and other symbols, including a Kaustubha-gem and the decoration of a forest flower garland. Wearing a pair of fine silken yellow garments and in his banner Garuda wore he a valuable crown and had he ornamented himself with gleaming shark-shaped earrings. (15) The sight of him dressed up as His spitting image, like he was an actor on a stage, made the Lord laugh heartily. (16) With tridents, clubs and bludgeons, pikes, blades, barbed missiles, lances, swords, axes and arrows was the Lord attacked by the enemies. (17) Krishna however with His club, sword, disc and arrows fiercely tormented that military force of elephants, chariots, horses and infantry of Paundraka and the king of Kâs'î, like He was the fire at the end of the world to the different kinds of living entities. (18) That battlefield, strewn with the by His disc cut to pieces chariots, horses, elephants, bipeds, mules and camels, shone like the horrible playground of the Lord of the Ghosts [Bhûtapati, or S'iva], bringing pleasure to the wise. (19) S'auri then said to Paundraka: 'Those weapons you spoke of to Me through the words of your messenger, I now discharge at you. (20) I'll make you renounce My name and all, that you falsely assumed, o fool; let Me today turn to you for shelter [as you wanted], if not wishing the battle.'

(21) Thus deriding him, drove He with His sharp arrows Paundraka out of his chariot and lopped He with His disc his head off, just like Indra with his thunderbolt would cut a mountain top. (22) So too severed He with His arrows the head of the king of Kâs'î from his body, sending it flying into Kâs'î-puri like the wind transporting a calyx of a lotus. (23) Thus having killed as well the envious Paundraka as his friend, entered the Lord Dvârakâ where He was honored by the perfected who recited His nectarean stories. (24) And so did he [Paundraka] of whom by his constant meditation upon Him in assuming the personal form of the Lord all bondage was completely shattered, become fully absorbed in Him [viz. Krishna conscious], o King [see sârûpya]. (25) Seeing the head with the earrings that had landed near the palace gate, wondered the people: 'Whose head would this be?' (26) Recognizing it as the head of the king, the ruler of Kâs'î, cried his queens, his sons and other relatives and the citizens their eyes out over it: 'Alas master, o master, o King, we're killed!' (27-28) His son named Sudakshina for the father executing the funeral rites, made up his mind and decided: 'In order to avenge my father I'll kill my father's murderer', and for that reason prayed he as su-dakshina, 'the excellence of the reward', together with priests with great attention to Mahes'vara [Lord S'iva]. (29) At [the holy place of] Avimukta offered the great lord him satisfied a choice of benedictions, upon which he as his benediction from the mighty demigod chose for a means to slay Him who had killed his father. (30-31) [S'iva said: ] 'With brahmins and the original priest be of service to the dakshina [southern] fire with an abhicâra ['hurting'] ritual of use against an enemy of the brahmins, so that surrounded by the Pramathas [see also 10.63: 6] your desire is fulfilled', and thus instructed observed he the vows with the purpose of harming Krishna. (32-33) Thereupon rose up from the fire of the altar pit, an impressive figure most horrendous with a tuft of hair, beard and mustache like molten copper, hot radiating cinders of eyes, terrible teeth and a harsh face with arched and furrowed eyebrows, who, with his tongue licking the corners of his mouth, naked waved a blazing trident [see also 4.5: 3 and 6.9: 12]. (34) With legs as big as palm trees shaking the earth ran he accompanied by ghosts to Dvârakâ burning the directions. (35) Seeing him, created from the abhicâra fire, approaching were all the residents of Dvârakâ, just like animals are with a big forest fire, stricken with fear. (36) Distraught went they in panic to the Supreme Personality of Godhead who in the royal court was playing a game of dice [and said to Him]: 'Save us, save us from the fire burning down the city, o Lord of the Three Worlds!'

(37) Hearing this clamor of the people and seeing how upset His own men were, laughed S'aranya, the Protector, loudly and said: 'Do not be afraid of this, I'll protect you!'

(38) The Almighty Lord, the Witness within and without of everyone, understood the creature to be of Mahes'vara and aimed to put an end to him the cakra He had always at His side. (39) That weapon, the Sudars'ana cakra of Krishna, that like a million suns was blazing with an effulgence like the fire at the end of the universe, tormented with its heat the sky, the heavens and the earth in the ten directions, affecting as well the fire [of the demon; see also 9.4: 46]. (40) He, the fire that was created, frustrated by the power of the weapon of Him with the Disc in His Hand turned around, o King, and in his deference from all sides closed in on Vârânasî and burned to death Sudakshina and all his priests with the abhicâra he had called for himself. (41) So also did the cakra of Vishnu in pursuit enter Vârânasî with its gateways and watchtowers and its many raised porches, assembly halls, market places, warehouses and the buildings housing the elephants, horses, chariots and grains. (42) Having laid in ashes all of Vârânasî returned Vishnu's Sudars'ana disc to the side of Krishna whose actions are effortless. (43) Any mortal who in full attention recounts or hears this heroic pastime of the Supreme One who is praised in the verses will be released of all sins.'

 

Chapter 67

Balarâma Slays the Ape Dvivida

(1) The honorable king said: 'I wish to hear further of Râma the Unlimited and Immeasurable One whose activities are so amazing; what else did the Prabhu do?'

(2) S'rî S'uka said: 'There was a certain ape named Dvivida ['the two-faced one'], a friend of Naraka [or Bhaumâsura, see 10.59], who as the mighty brother of Mainda had been Sugrîva [the monkey-chief, see also 9.10: 32] his adviser [*]. (3) The ape to avenge his friend [who was killed by Krishna] wreaked havoc setting fire to the cities, villages, mines and cowherd communities of the kingdom. (4) Some day he tore loose rocks and devastated with them all the lands of the province of Ânarta, especially at those places where the Killer of his friend, the Lord, dwelt [in Dvârakâ]. (5) The other day stood he at the shore in the midst of the ocean to churn with a force of ten thousand elephants with his arms the ocean its water and flooded he the coastal regions. (6) At the âs'ramas of the exalted seers he wickedly broke down the trees and fouled the sacrificial fires with urine and stool. (7) Like a wasp hiding an insect, threw he brutally men and women in a mountain valley in caves which he sealed with large boulders. (8) Thus ravaging the lands and [even] defiling women of standing went he, [some day] hearing the sweetest music, to the mountain named Raivataka. (9-10) There he saw Balarâma the Lord of the Yadus wearing a lotus garland, most attractive in all His limbs in the midst of a bevy of women while He with rolling eyes was singing, intoxicated of drinking vârunî [see also 10.65: 19]. His body had therewith a brilliant glow like that of an elephant in rut. (11) The mischievous tree-dweller climbed on a branch and presented himself by shaking the tree and crying out frantically. (12) Seeing his impudence laughed Baladeva's consorts out aloud; as women in for some fun they at first thought little of it. (13) The ape ridiculed them with odd gestures of his eyebrows and such and showed right in front of them as Râma was watching, his arse to them. (14-15) Balarâma, the best of launchers, threw angry a rock at him, but the rascal ape made fun of Him dodging it and seizing the jar of liquor, and further aggravated Him by wickedly laughing breaking the jar and pulling the ladies' clothes; and thus was he, with all his power, full of false pride with his insults offending the Strong One. (16) Faced with his rudeness and the ravage all around created by his terror, took He angry up His club and plow, decided to kill the enemy. (17) Dvivida also of great talents uprooted a s'âla tree with one hand and struck swiftly approaching Balarâma on the head with it. (18) But Sankarshana like a mountain unshaken most strong took hold of it as it descended on His head and struck him back with Sunanda [His club]. (19-21) Hit by the club on his skull looked he with the resulting downpour of blood as nice as a mountain red of oxide. On his turn charged he next, ignoring the blow, uprooting and stripping another tree violently again, but Balarâma now enraged smashed it into a hundred pieces just as He did with another one that was taken up with great fury. (22) By the Supreme Lord time and again being beaten and beaten, stripped he that way raging with his uprooting the forest of all its trees. (23) When he, frustrated, next released a hail of stones over Baladeva, pulverized the Wielder of the Club them all with ease. (24) With the both his arms as big as palm trees clenching his fists, charged the champion of the apes now the Son of Rohinî and beated he Him on the chest. (25) The Great Lord of the Yadus thereupon threw aside His club and plow and hammered with His hands him furiously on the collarbone so that Dvivida fell down vomiting blood. (26) Of the impact of him shook the mountain with all its cliffs and trees, o tiger among the Kurus, like it was a boat in the water tossed by the wind. (27) Sounding 'Jaya!', 'All glories!' and 'Excellent!', poured the enlightened, the perfected and the great sages residing in heaven down a shower of flowers.

(28) Thus having finished Dvivida who wreaked havoc in the world, was the Supreme Lord upon entering the city by the people glorified with hymns.'  

Footnote:

* According to S'rîla Jîva Gosvâmî, the Mainda and Dvivida mentioned in this verse are empowered expansions of these Ramâyana deities, who as residents of Lord Râmacandra's Vaikunthha domain fell because of an offense with Laksksmâna. S'rîla Vis'vanâtha Cakravartî compares the fall, in bad association with Naraka, of Dvivida and Mainda - whom he considers eternally liberated devotees - to that of Jaya and Vijaya.  

 

 Chapter 68

The Marriage of Sâmba and the Kuru City Dragged Trembling of His Anger

(1) S'rî S'uka said: 'O King, the daughter of Duryodhana named Lakshmanâ was by Sâmba ['with the mother'], the son of Jâmbavatî who was always victorious in battle, abducted from her svayamvara. (2) The Kauravas said angered: 'How ill-behaved this boy insulting us is, in his by force taking the maiden against her will. (3) Arrest him who is so undisciplined; what can the Vrishnis do against it? By our grace they acquired the land we gave them to enjoy! (4) If the Vrishnis, learning that their son was captured, get over here, will we break their pride so that they will find peace the way the senses will when they're properly brought under control.'

(5) Having said this set Karna, S'ala, Bhûri, Yajñaketu [or Bhuris'ravâ] and Duryodhana, with the permission of the Kuru-eldest [Bhîshma], out to fight Sâmba. (6) As soon as the great warrior Sâmba saw the followers of Dhritarâshthra rushing toward him, took he up his splendid bow and stood he singlehanded his ground like a lion. (7) Determined to capture him said they who were headed by Karna full of anger: 'You stand, stand and fight', upon which the bowmen, getting before him, showered him with arrows. (8) He the son of the Yadus, o best of the Kurus, unjustly by the Kurus [- by the lot of them -] attacked, could, as the child of the Inconceivable One [Krishna], not tolerate that anymore than a lion would tolerate such a thing of lower animals. (9-10) Twanging his wonderful bow pierced the hero all by himself, in one move, six warriors of Karna using as many arrows for their chariots: four arrows were there for each team of four horses and one arrow for each its charioteer and warrior. For that feat of arms was he by the great bowmen then honored. (11) With four of them striking his horses, one his charioteer and one splitting his bow, drove they him out of his chariot. (12) Once they in the fight had the young boy out of his chariot, tied the Kurus him up and turned they, with their girl, victoriously back to their city.

(13) When they heard from Nârada Muni about this o King, got they [the Yadus] angry with the Kurus [see also 10.49: 27] and prepared they, on the command of Ugrasena, for war. (14-15) But Râma, He who purifies the Age of Quarrel [Kali-yuga], not wishing a quarrel between the Vrishnis and Kurus, calmed down the Vrishni heroes and went with His chariot, that shone like the sun, to Hastinâpura. Surrounded by the brahmins and the elders of the family looked He like the moon with the seven planets [then known, see also 5.22]. (16) Reaching Hastinâpura remained Râma outside in a park and sent He Uddhava ahead to find out what Dhritarâshthra had in mind. (17) He, offering his respects to the son of Ambikâ [Dhritarâshthra], to Bhîshma and Drona, Bâhlika and Duryodhana, informed them that Râma had arrived. (18) They, extremely pleased to hear that He, Balarâma, their Dearest Friend had arrived, all, after duly paying him their respects, went forth to meet Him with auspicious offerings in their hands. (19) Going up to Balarâma presented they, as was proper, cows and water to welcome Him and bowed they who knew of His power their heads down. (20) Inquiring with one another whether their relatives were hale and hearty spoke Râma next straight from His heart the words: (21) 'With undivided attention having taken notice of what Ugrasena our master, the ruler of the rulers of the earth, has demanded of you, should you without delay act accordingly. [He has said:] (22) 'Your in defiance of the rules with the many of you defeating and tying up but a single man who did follow the codes [of war], do I, wishing to keep unity among relatives, tolerate... [but I do not wish to see that continued and thus want you to release Sâmba].'

(23) Hearing the words of Baladeva that befitting His own power were filled with potency, courage and strength answered the Kauravas enraged: (24) 'Oh what a great wonder the inescapable movement of Time is; now is that what is a shoe trying to climb on top of the head that is ornamented with a crown! (25) With these Vrishnis who are connected to us by marriage ties, we share our beds, seats and meals. We treated them as equals and gave them their thrones. (26) Because we looked the other way could they enjoy the pair of yak-tail fans, the conch shell, the white sunshade, the crown, the throne and the royal bed [compare: 10.60: 10-20]. (27) Enough with us allowing the Yadus the symbols of the gods among men. Those symbols work as much to the disadvantage of the giver [that we are] as giving nectar to snakes. The Yadus, who could prosper by our grace, now assuming the command have lost all shame indeed. (28) How would even Indra dare to appropriate what is not given by Bhîshma, Drona, Arjuna or the other Kurus: it's like a sheep claiming a lions kill!'

(29) The son of Vyâsa said: 'They who in their arrogance over the birth, relations and the opulences that made them great, o best of the Bharatas, as rude men with harsh words made this clear to Râma, then returned to the city. (30) Faced with the bad character of the Kurus and hearing their unbecoming words said the Infallible Lord infuriated, repeatedly laughing and without presenting Himself nicely: (31) 'Driven by their various passions having a big mouth are these dishonest people truly not desiring the peace. They evidently need to be pacified with physical punishment like animals one has to beat with a stick! (32-33) Oh, looking for peace with these people I came here, tactfully having calmed the Yadus who boiled with anger as also Krishna who was mad; and those very same dull-headed people addicted to quarreling now full of conceit have the audacity to use, in their wickedness of not repecting Him - Me thus -, this kind of harsh words! (34) And Ugrasena wouldn't be fit to command the Bhojas, Vrishnis and Andhakas while S'akra ['the powerful one' or Indra] and other rulers follow his orders?? (35) And He [Krishna], sitting in Sudharmâ [the heavenly council-hall], thanks to whom the pârijâta tree brought down from the immortals is enjoyed [see 10.59: 38-39], that same One wouldn't even be fit an elevated seat??? (36) He, the Ruler of the Complete, whose two feet the Goddess of Fortune herself worships; He, truly the Lord of S'rî, wouldn't deserve the paraphernalia of a human king?!?! (37) He of whom all the exalted rulers of the world on their helmets hold the dust of His lotuslike feet; the place of worship of all holy places of whom Brahmâ, S'iva and I also next to the goddess, as portions of a portion, also constantly carry the dust with care; where would His royal throne be?????! (38) The Vrishnis would enjoy but a small piece of land granted to them by the Kurus? And We to that would be the so-called shoes, while the Kurus would be the head then?!!!? (39) Ah those proud madmen intoxicated by their would-be power of rule, what man in command can tolerate their inconsistent, dismal drivel? (40) Today I'll rid the earth of the Kauravas!', and thus speaking took He enraged His plow and rose He up as if he would set fire to the three worlds.

(41) With the tip of His plow He infuriated tore close the city of Hastinâpura and dragged her along with the intention to throw her into the Ganges. (42-43) When the Kauravas saw how the city, about to fall in the Ganges, being dragged tumbled about like a raft, became they very agitated and went they, in order to save their lives, with their families to the Master for shelter. With Lakshmanâ and Sâmba put in front folded they their hands: (44) 'Râma, o Râma, o Foundation of Everything [Akhilâdhâra], us the infatuated, who poor of understanding do not know Your Majesty, You should forgive the offense. (45) Of the generation, continuation and reuniting [of this universe] are You alone the unique cause; the worlds accordingly are, so one says, the playthings of Your playing, o Heavenly Lord. (46) You alone, o Unlimited one, carry on Your head playfully the globe of the earth, o Thousand-headed One [see also 5.25] and when the creation ends are You the One who lies down to remain the One Without a Second who within His own body has withdrawn the universe [see also 6.16: 29-64]. (47) The anger of You meant for the instruction of everyone, o Bhagavân, Sustainer of the Mode of Goodness, is not there out of hatred or envy but is there for the purpose of sustaining and protecting the living being. (48) I offer You my obeisances, o Soul of All Beings, o Holder of [the symbols of] All Energies, o Inexhaustible One, Maker of the Universe; let there be the reverence for You whom we sought for shelter.'

(49) S'rî S'uka said: 'Lord Bala thus propitiated by the surrendered souls who were distressed because of the trembling of their place of residence, then relieved them very calm and graciously of their fear with the words: 'Do not fear'. (50-51) As a dowry for his daughter gave Duryodhana as a loving father away twelve hundred sixty-year-old elephants and hundred and twenty thousand horses, sixty thousand golden chariots shining like the sun and a thousand maidservants with jeweled lockets around their necks. (52) The Supreme Lord, the chief of all the Sâtvatas, after accepting that gift then departed with His son and daughter-in-law, bid farewell by His well-wishers. (53) After reaching His city and having met the relatives who carried Him, the Wielder of the Plow, in their hearts, related He in the midst of the assembly of leaders of the Yadus everything that had passed between Him and the Kurus. (54) And truely, even today shows this city the signs of Râma's prowess, the way it can be seen down by the Ganges being prominently elevated to the south.'

 

 

Thusthe third part of the tenth Canto of the S'rîmad Bhâgavatam ends named: 'Summum Bonum'.

 

 

Translation: Anand Aadhar Prabhu, http://bhagavata.org/c/8/AnandAadhar.html

Production: the Filognostic Association of The Order of Time, with special thanks to Sakhya Devi Dasi for proofreading and correcting the manuscript. http://theorderoftime.com/info/guests-friends.html
 

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