Śrīmad Bhāgavatam|Canto 10 Chapter 42
The Breaking of the Sacrificial Bow
atha vrajan rāja-pathena mādhavaḥ
vilokya kubjāṁ yuvatīṁ varānanāṁ
papraccha yāntīṁ prahasan rasa-pradaḥ
śrī-śukaḥ uvāca — Śukadeva Gosvāmī said; atha — then; vrajan — walking; rāja-pathena — along the King’s road; mādhavaḥ — Kṛṣṇa; striyam — a woman; gṛhīta — holding; aṅga — for the body; vilepa — with ointments; bhājanām — a tray; vilokya — seeing; kubjām — hunchbacked; yuvatīm — young; vara-ānanām — with an attractive face; papraccha — He inquired; yāntīm — going; prahasan — smiling; rasa — of the pleasure of love; pradaḥ — the bestower.
Śukadeva Gosvāmī said: As He walked down the King’s road, Lord Mādhava then saw a young hunchback woman with an attractive face, who carried a tray of fragrant ointments as she walked along. The bestower of the ecstasy of love smiled and inquired from her as follows.
kā tvaṁ varorv etad u hānulepanaṁ
kasyāṅgane vā kathayasva sādhu naḥ
dehy āvayor aṅga-vilepam uttamaṁ
śreyas tatas te na cirād bhaviṣyati
kā — who; tvam — you; vara-ūru — O beautiful-thighed one; etat — this; u ha — ah, indeed; anulepanam — ointment; kasya — for whom; aṅgane — My dear woman; vā — or; kathayasva — please tell; sādhu — honestly; naḥ — Us; dehi — please give; āvayoḥ — to Us two; aṅga-vilepam — body ointment; uttamam — excellent; śreyaḥ — benefit; tataḥ — thereafter; te — your; na cirāt — soon; bhaviṣyati — will be.
[Lord Kṛṣṇa said:] Who are you, O beautiful-thighed one? Ah, ointment! Who is it for, my dear lady? Please tell Us truthfully. Give Us both some of your finest ointment and you will soon gain a great boon.
dāsy asmy ahaṁ sundara kaṁsa-sammatā
trivakra-nāmā hy anulepa-karmaṇi
mad-bhāvitaṁ bhoja-pater ati-priyaṁ
vinā yuvāṁ ko ’nyatamas tad arhati
sairandhrī uvāca — the maidservant said; dāsī — a servant; asmi — am; aham — I; sundara — O handsome one; kaṁsa — by Kaṁsa; sammatā — respected; trivakra-nāmā — known as Trivakrā (“bent in three places”); hi — indeed; anulepa — with ointments; karmaṇi — for my work; mat — by me; bhāvitam — prepared; bhoja-pateḥ — to the chief of the Bhojas; ati-priyam — very dear; vinā — except for; yuvām — You two; kaḥ — who; anyatamaḥ — else; tat — that; arhati — deserves.
The maidservant replied: O handsome one, I am a servant of King Kaṁsa, who highly regards me for the ointments I make. My name is Trivakrā. Who else but You two deserve my ointments, which the lord of the Bhojas likes so much?
dharṣitātmā dadau sāndram
rūpa — by His beauty; peśala — charm; mādhurya — sweetness; hasita — smiles; ālāpa — talking; vīkṣitaiḥ — and glances; dharṣita — overwhelmed; ātmā — her mind; dadau — she gave; sāndram — plentiful; ubhayoḥ — to both of Them; anulepanam — ointment.
Her mind overwhelmed by Kṛṣṇa’s beauty, charm, sweetness, smiles, words and glances, Trivakrā gave both Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma generous amounts of ointment.
tatas tāv aṅga-rāgeṇa
tataḥ — then; tau — They; aṅga — of Their bodies; rāgeṇa — with the coloring cosmetics; sva — Their own; varṇa — with colors; itara — other than; śobhinā — adorning; samprāpta — which exhibited; para — the highest; bhagena — excellence; śuśubhāte — They appeared beautiful; anurañjitau — anointed.
Anointed with these most excellent cosmetics, which adorned Them with hues that contrasted with Their complexions, the two Lords appeared extremely beautiful.
prasanno bhagavān kubjāṁ
ṛjvīṁ kartuṁ manaś cakre
darśayan darśane phalam
prasannaḥ — satisfied; bhagavān — the Supreme Lord; kubjām — the hunchback; trivakrā — Trivakrā; rucira — attractive; ānanām — whose face; ṛjvīm — straight; kartum — to make; manaḥ cakre — He decided; darśayan — showing; darśane — of seeing Him; phalam — the result.
Lord Kṛṣṇa was pleased with Trivakrā, so He decided to straighten that hunchbacked girl with the lovely face just to demonstrate the result of seeing Him.
padbhyām ākramya prapade
pragṛhya cibuke ’dhyātmam
padbhyām — with both His feet; ākramya — pressing down; prapade — on her toes; dvi — having two; aṅguli — fingers; uttāna — pointing upwards; pāṇinā — with His hands; pragṛhya — taking hold of; cibuke — her chin; adhyātmam — her body; udanīnamat — He raised; acyutaḥ — Lord Kṛṣṇa.
Pressing down on her toes with both His feet, Lord Acyuta placed one upward-pointing finger of each hand under her chin and straightened up her body.
sā — she; tadā — then; ṛju — straight; samāna — even; aṅgī — her limbs; bṛhat — large; śroṇi — her hips; payaḥ-dharā — and breasts; mukunda-sparśanāt — by the touch of Lord Mukunda; sadyaḥ — suddenly; babhūva — became; pramadā — a woman; uttamā — most perfect.
Simply by Lord Mukunda’s touch, Trivakrā was suddenly transformed into an exquisitely beautiful woman with straight, evenly proportioned limbs and large hips and breasts.
sampannā prāha keśavam
tataḥ — then; rūpa — with beauty; guṇa — good character; audārya — and generosity; sampannā — endowed; prāha — she addressed; keśavam — Lord Kṛṣṇa; uttarīya — of His upper garment; antam — the end; ākṛṣya — pulling; smayantī — smiling; jāta — having developed; hṛt-śayā — lusty feelings.
Now endowed with beauty, character and generosity, Trivakrā began to feel lusty desires for Lord Keśava. Taking hold of the end of His upper cloth, she smiled and addressed Him as follows.
ehi vīra gṛhaṁ yāmo
na tvāṁ tyaktum ihotsahe
ehi — come; vīra — O hero; gṛham — to my house; yāmaḥ — let us go; na — not; tvām — You; tyaktum — to leave; iha — here; utsahe — I can bear; tvayā — by You; unmathita — agitated; cittāyāḥ — on her whose mind; prasīda — please have mercy; puruṣa-ṛṣabha — O best of men.
[Trivakrā said:] Come, O hero, let us go to my house. I cannot bear to leave You here. O best of males, please take pity on me, since You have agitated my mind.
evaṁ striyā yācyamānaḥ
kṛṣṇo rāmasya paśyataḥ
mukhaṁ vīkṣyānu gopānāṁ
prahasaṁs tām uvāca ha
evam — in this way; striyā — by the woman; yācya nānaḥ — being begged; kṛṣṇaḥ — Lord Kṛṣṇa; rāmasya — of Balarāma; paśyataḥ — who was looking on; mukham — at the face; vīkṣya — glancing; anu — then; gopānām — of the cowherd boys; prahasan — laughing; tām — to her; uvāca ha — He said.
Thus entreated by the woman, Lord Kṛṣṇa first glanced at the face of Balarāma, who was watching the incident, and then at the faces of the cowherd boys. Then with a laugh Kṛṣṇa replied to her as follows.
eṣyāmi te gṛhaṁ su-bhru
sādhitārtho ’gṛhāṇāṁ naḥ
pānthānāṁ tvaṁ parāyaṇam
eṣyāmi — I will go; te — your; gṛham — to the house; su-bhru — O you who have beautiful eyebrows; puṁsām — of men; ādhi — the mental distress; vikarśanam — which eradicates; sādhita — having accomplished; arthaḥ — My purpose; agṛhāṇām — who have no home; naḥ — for Us; pānthānām — who are traveling on the road; tvam — you; para — the best; ayanam — shelter.
[Lord Kṛṣṇa said:] O lady with beautiful eyebrows, as soon as I fulfill My purpose I will certainly visit your house, where men can relieve their anxiety. Indeed, you are the best refuge for Us homeless travelers.
visṛjya mādhvyā vāṇyā tām
vrajan mārge vaṇik-pathaiḥ
srag-gandhaiḥ sāgrajo ’rcitaḥ
visṛjya — leaving; mādhvyā — sweet; vāṇyā — with words; tām — her; vrajan — walking; mārge — along the road; vaṇik-pathaiḥ — by the merchants; nānā — with various; upāyana — respectful offerings; tāmbūla — betel nut; srak — garlands; gandhaiḥ — and fragrant substances; sa — together with; agra-jaḥ — His elder brother; arcitaḥ — worshiped.
Leaving her with these sweet words, Lord Kṛṣṇa walked further down the road. The merchants along the way worshiped Him and His elder brother by presenting Them with various respectful offerings, including pān, garlands and fragrant substances.
ātmānaṁ nāvidan striyaḥ
tat — Him; darśana — because of seeing; smara — due to the effects of Cupid; kṣobhāt — by their agitation; ātmānam — themselves; na avidan — could not recognize; striyaḥ — the women; visrasta — disheveled; vāsaḥ — their clothes; kavara — the locks of their hair; valayāḥ — and their bangles; lekhya — (as if) drawn in a picture; mūrtayaḥ — their forms.
The sight of Kṛṣṇa aroused Cupid in the hearts of the city women. Thus agitated, they forgot themselves. Their clothes, braids and bangles became disheveled, and they stood as still as figures in a painting.
tataḥ paurān pṛcchamāno
dhanuṣaḥ sthānam acyutaḥ
tasmin praviṣṭo dadṛśe
dhanur aindram ivādbhutam
tataḥ — then; paurān — from the city residents; pṛcchamānaḥ — inquiring about; dhanuṣaḥ — of the bow; sthānam — the place; acyutaḥ — the infallible Supreme Lord; tasmin — there; praviṣṭaḥ — entering; dadṛśe — He saw; dhanuḥ — the bow; aindram — that of Lord Indra; iva — like; adbhutam — amazing.
Lord Kṛṣṇa then asked the local people where the arena was in which the bow sacrifice would take place. When He went there He saw the amazing bow, which resembled Lord Indra’s.
puruṣair bahubhir guptam
vāryamāṇo nṛbhiḥ kṛṣṇaḥ
prasahya dhanur ādade
puruṣaiḥ — by men; bahubhiḥ — many; guptam — guarded; arcitam — being worshiped; parama — supreme; ṛddhi — opulence; mat — possessing; vāryamāṇaḥ — warded off; nṛbhiḥ — by the guards; kṛṣṇaḥ — Lord Kṛṣṇa; prasahya — by force; dhanuḥ — the bow; ādade — picked up.
That most opulent bow was guarded by a large company of men, who were respectfully worshiping it. Kṛṣṇa pushed His way forward and, despite the guards’ attempts to stop Him, picked it up.
kareṇa vāmena sa-līlam uddhṛtaṁ
sajyaṁ ca kṛtvā nimiṣeṇa paśyatām
nṛṇāṁ vikṛṣya prababhañja madhyato
yathekṣu-daṇḍaṁ mada-kary urukramaḥ
kareṇa — with His hand; vāmena — left; sa-līlam — playfully; uddhṛtam — lifted; sajyam — the stringing; ca — and; kṛtvā — doing; nimiṣeṇa — in the wink of an eye; paśyatām — as they watched; nṛṇām — the guards; vikṛṣya — pulling it taut; prababhañja — He broke it; madhyataḥ — in the middle; yathā — as; ikṣu — of sugarcane; daṇḍam — a stick; mada-karī — an excited elephant; urukramaḥ — Lord Kṛṣṇa.
Easily lifting the bow with His left hand, Lord Urukrama strung it in a fraction of a second as the King’s guards looked on. He then powerfully pulled the string and snapped the bow in half, just as an excited elephant might break a stalk of sugar cane.
śabdaḥ khaṁ rodasī diśaḥ
pūrayām āsa yaṁ śrutvā
kaṁsas trāsam upāgamat
dhanuṣaḥ — of the bow; bhajyamānasya — which was breaking; śabdaḥ — the sound; kham — the earth; rodasī — the sky; diśaḥ — and all the directions; pūrayām āsa — filled; yam — which; śrutvā — hearing; kaṁsaḥ — King Kaṁsa; trāsam — fear; upāgamat — experienced.
The sound of the bow’s breaking filled the earth and sky in all directions. Upon hearing it, Kaṁsa was struck with terror.
gṛhyatāṁ vadhyatām iti
tat — its; rakṣiṇaḥ — guards; sa — along with; anucaram — His companions; kupitāḥ — angered; ātatāyinaḥ — holding weapons; gṛhītu — to catch; kāmāḥ — wanting; āvavruḥ — surrounded; gṛhyatām — seize Him; vadhyatām — kill Him; iti — thus saying.
The enraged guards then took up their weapons and, wanting to seize Kṛṣṇa and His companions, surrounded them and shouted, “Grab Him! Kill Him!”
atha tān durabhiprāyān
kruddhau dhanvana ādāya
śakale tāṁś ca jaghnatuḥ
atha — thereupon; tān — them; durabhiprāyān — with evil intent; vilokya — seeing; bala-keśavau — Balarāma and Kṛṣṇa; kruddhau — angry; dhanvanaḥ — of the bow; ādāya — taking; śakale — the two broken pieces; tān — them; ca — and; jaghnatuḥ — struck.
Seeing the guards coming upon Them with evil intent, Balarāma and Keśava took up the two halves of the bow and began striking them down.
balaṁ ca kaṁsa-prahitaṁ
hatvā śālā-mukhāt tataḥ
niṣkramya ceratur hṛṣṭau
balam — an armed force; ca — and; kaṁsa-prahitam — sent by Kaṁsa; hatvā — having killed; śālā — of the sacrificial arena; mukhāt — by the gate; tataḥ — then; niṣkramya — exiting; ceratuḥ — the two of Them walked along; hṛṣṭau — happy; nirīkṣya — observing; pura — of the city; sampadaḥ — the riches.
After also killing a contingent of soldiers sent by Kaṁsa, Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma left the sacrificial arena by its main gate and continued Their walk about the city, happily looking at the opulent sights.
tayos tad adbhutaṁ vīryaṁ
tejaḥ prāgalbhyaṁ rūpaṁ ca
tayoḥ — of Them; tat — that; adbhutam — amazing; vīryam — heroic deed; niśāmya — seeing; pura-vāsinaḥ — the residents of the city; tejaḥ — Their strength; prāgalbhyam — boldness; rūpam — beauty; ca — and; menire — they considered; vibudha — of demigods; uttamau — two of the best.
Having witnessed the amazing deed Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma had performed, and seeing Their strength, boldness and beauty, the people of the city thought They must be two prominent demigods.
tayor vicaratoḥ svairam
ādityo ’stam upeyivān
kṛṣṇa-rāmau vṛtau gopaiḥ
purāc chakaṭam īyatuḥ
tayoḥ — as They; vicaratoḥ — moved about; svairam — at Their will; ādityaḥ — the sun; astam — its setting; upeyivān — approached; kṛṣṇa-rāmau — Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma; vṛtau — accompanied; gopaiḥ — by the cowherd boys; purāt — from the city; śakaṭam — to the place where the wagons had been unharnessed; īyatuḥ — went.
As They strolled about at will, the sun began to set, so They left the city with the cowherd boys and returned to the cowherds’ wagon encampment.
gopyo mukunda-vigame virahāturā yā
āśāsatāśiṣa ṛtā madhu-pury abhūvan
hitvetarān nu bhajataś cakame ’yanaṁ śrīḥ
gopyaḥ — the gopīs; mukunda-vigame — when Lord Mukunda was departing; viraha — by feelings of separation; āturāḥ — tormented; yāḥ — which; āśāsata — they had spoken; āśiṣaḥ — the benedictions; ṛtāḥ — true; madhu-puri — in Mathurā; abhūvan — have become; sampaśyatām — for those who are fully seeing; puruṣa — of men; bhūṣaṇa — of the ornament; gātra — of His body; lakṣmīm — the beauty; hitvā — abandoning; itarān — others; nu — indeed; bhajataḥ — who were worshiping her; cakame — hankered for; ayanam — shelter; śrīḥ — the goddess of fortune.
At the time of Mukunda’s [Kṛṣṇa’s] departure from Vṛndāvana, the gopīs had foretold that the residents of Mathurā would enjoy many benedictions, and now the gopīs’ predictions were coming true, for those residents were gazing upon the beauty of Kṛṣṇa, the jewel among men. Indeed, the goddess of fortune desired the shelter of that beauty so much that she abandoned many other men, although they worshiped her.
ūṣatus tāṁ sukhaṁ rātriṁ
avanikta — bathed; aṅghri-yugalau — the two feet of each of Them; bhuktvā — eating; kṣīra-upasecanam — boiled rice sprinkled with milk; ūṣatuḥ — They stayed there; tām — for that; sukham — comfortably; rātrim — night; jñātvā — knowing; kaṁsa-cikīrṣitam — what Kaṁsa intended to do.
After Kṛṣṇa’s and Balarāma’s feet were bathed, the two Lords ate rice with milk. Then, although knowing what Kaṁsa intended to do, They spent the night there comfortably.
kaṁsas tu dhanuṣo bhaṅgaṁ
rakṣiṇāṁ sva-balasya ca
vadhaṁ niśamya govinda-
mṛtyor dautya-karāṇi ca
kaṁsaḥ — King Kaṁsa; tu — but; dhanuṣaḥ — of the bow; bhaṅgam — the breaking; rakṣiṇām — of the guards; sva — his; balasya — of the army; ca — and; vadham — the killing; niśamya — hearing of; govinda-rāma — of Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma; vikrīḍitam — the playing; param — merely; dīrgha — for a long time; prajāgaraḥ — remaining awake; bhītaḥ — afraid; durnimittāni — bad omens; durmatiḥ — the wicked-minded; bahūni — many; acaṣṭa — saw; ubhayathā — in both states (sleep and wakefulness); mṛtyoḥ — of death; dautya-karāṇi — the messengers; ca — and.
Wicked King Kaṁsa, on the other hand, was terrified, having heard how Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma had broken the bow and killed his guards and soldiers, all simply as a game. He remained awake for a long time, and both while awake and while dreaming he saw many bad omens, messengers of death.
pratirūpe ca saty api
asaty api dvitīye ca
dvai-rūpyaṁ jyotiṣāṁ tathā
yāyān nalada-māly ekas
nidrāṁ lebhe na cintayā
adarśanam — the invisibility; sva — of his own; śirasaḥ — head; pratirūpe — his reflection; ca — and; sati — being present; api — even; asati — there not being; api — even; dvitīye — a cause for duplication; ca — and; dvai-rūpyam — double image; jyotiṣām — of the heavenly bodies; tathā — also; chidra — of a hole; pratītiḥ — the seeing; chāyāyām — in his shadow; prāṇa — of his life air; ghoṣa — of the reverberation; anupaśrutiḥ — the failure to hear; svarṇa — of a golden color; pratītiḥ — the perception; vṛkṣeṣu — on trees; sva — his own; padānām — footprints; adarśanam — not seeing; svapne — while asleep; preta — by ghostly spirits; pariṣvaṅgaḥ — being embraced; khara — upon a donkey; yānam — traveling; viṣa — poison; adanam — swallowing; yāyāt — was going about; nalada — of spikenards, rose-purple flowers native to India; mālī — wearing a garland; ekaḥ — someone; taila — with oil; abhyaktaḥ — smeared; dik-ambaraḥ — naked; anyāni — other (omens); ca — and; ittham-bhūtāni — like these; svapna — while asleep; jāgaritāni — while awake; ca — also; paśyan — seeing; maraṇa — of death; santrastaḥ — terrified; nidrām — sleep; lebhe — he could achieve; na — not; cintayā — because of his anxiety.
When he looked at his reflection he could not see his head; for no reason the moon and stars appeared double; he saw a hole in his shadow; he could not hear the sound of his life air; trees seemed covered with a golden hue; and he could not see his footprints. He dreamt that he was being embraced by ghosts, riding a donkey and drinking poison, and also that a naked man smeared with oil was passing by wearing a garland of nalada flowers. Seeing these and other such omens both while dreaming and while awake, Kaṁsa was terrified by the prospect of death, and out of anxiety he could not sleep.
vyuṣṭāyāṁ niśi kauravya
sūrye cādbhyaḥ samutthite
kārayām āsa vai kaṁso
vyuṣṭāyām — having passed; niśi — the night; kauravya — O descendant of Kuru (Parīkṣit); sūrye — the sun; ca — and; adbhyaḥ — from the water; samutthite — rising; kārayām āsa — had carried out; vai — indeed; kaṁsaḥ — Kaṁsa; malla — of wrestlers; krīḍā — of the sport; mahā-utsavam — the great festival.
When the night had finally passed and the sun rose up again from the water, Kaṁsa set about arranging for the grand wrestling festival.
ānarcuḥ puruṣā raṅgaṁ
tūrya-bheryaś ca jaghnire
mañcāś cālaṅkṛtāḥ sragbhiḥ
ānarcuḥ — worshiped; puruṣāḥ — the King’s men; raṅgam — the arena; tūrya — musical instruments; bheryaḥ — drums; ca — and; jaghnire — they vibrated; mañcāḥ — the viewing platforms; ca — and; alaṅkṛtāḥ — were decorated; sragbhiḥ — with garlands; patākā — with flags; caila — cloth ribbons; toraṇaiḥ — and gateways.
The King’s men performed the ritual worship of the wrestling arena, sounded their drums and other instruments and decorated the viewing galleries with garlands, flags, ribbons and arches.
teṣu paurā jānapadā
rājānaś ca kṛtāsanāḥ
teṣu — upon these (platforms); paurāḥ — the city-dwellers; jānapadāḥ — and the people of the suburbs; brahma — by the brāhmaṇas; kṣatra — and the kṣatriyas; puraḥ-gamāḥ — headed; yathā-upajoṣam — as suited their comfort; viviśuḥ — came and sat; rājānaḥ — the kings; ca — also; kṛta — given; asanāḥ — special seats.
The city-dwellers and residents of the outlying districts, led by brāhmaṇas and kṣatriyas, came and sat down comfortably in the galleries. The royal guests received special seats.
kaṁsaḥ parivṛto ’mātyai
kaṁsaḥ — Kaṁsa; parivṛtaḥ — surrounded; amātyaiḥ — by his ministers; rāja-mañce — on the King’s platform; upāviśati — sat; maṇḍala-īśvara — of secondary rulers of various regions; madhya — in the midst; sthaḥ — situated; hṛdayena — with his heart; vidūyatā — trembling.
Surrounded by his ministers, Kaṁsa took his seat on the imperial dais. But even as he sat amidst his various provincial rulers, his heart trembled.
mallāḥ sv-alaṅkṛtāḥ dṛptāḥ
vādyamāneṣu — as they were being played; tūryeṣu — the musical instruments; malla — suitable for wrestling; tāla — with meters; uttareṣu — prominent; ca — and; mallāḥ — the wrestlers; su-alaṅkṛtāḥ — well ornamented; dṛptāḥ — proud; sa-upādhyāyāḥ — together with their instructors; samāsata — came and sat down.
While the musical instruments loudly played in the rhythmic meters appropriate for wrestling matches, the lavishly ornamented wrestlers proudly entered the arena with their coaches and sat down.
cāṇūro muṣṭikaḥ kūtaḥ
śalas tośala eva ca
ta āsedur upasthānaṁ
cāṇūraḥ muṣṭikaḥ kūṭaḥ — the wrestlers Cāṇūra, Muṣṭika and Kūṭa; śalaḥ tośalaḥ — Śala and Tośala; eva ca — also; te — they; āseduḥ — sat down; upasthānam — on the mat of the wrestling ring; valgu — pleasing; vādya — by the music; praharṣitāḥ — enthused.
Enthused by the pleasing music, Canura, Muṣṭika, Kūṭa, Śala and Tośala sat down on the wrestling mat.
ekasmin mañca āviśan
nanda-gopa-ādayaḥ — headed by Nanda Gopa; gopāḥ — the cowherds; bhoja-rāja — by Kaṁsa, King of the Bhojas; samāhutāḥ — called forward; nivedita — presenting; upāyanāḥ — their offerings; te — they; ekasmin — in one; mañce — viewing gallery; āviśan — sat down.
Nanda Mahārāja and the other cowherds, summoned by the King of the Bhojas, presented him with their offerings and then took their seats in one of the galleries.