The Brahma Purana

by G. P. Bhatt | 1955 | 243,464 words

This is the Brahma Purana in English (translation from Sanskrit), which is one of the eighteen Maha Puranas. The contents of this ancient Indian encyclopedic treatise include cosmology, genealogy (solar dynasty etc.), mythology, geology and Dharma (universal law of nature). The Brahma Purana is notable for its extenstive geological survey includin...

Chapter 97 - Uṣā and Aniruddha were brought back

Vyāsa said:

1-2. Bāṇa bowed down in front of the three-eyed lord and said—O lord, without any battle (to fight) I am disgusted with my thousand arms. Will there be any battle at all, making my arms fruitful? Without a battle they are conducive to be burdensome. Of what avail are they to me?

Śaṅkara said:

3. O Bāṇa, when there is an unprecedented breakage in your flagstaff you will have a war that will delight the flesh-eating asuras.

Vyāsa said:

4. Joyously he bowed down to Śambhu and returned to his mansion? On seeing breakage in his flagstaff he was very much delighted.

5-6. In the meantime, by virtue of her yogic power, Citralekhā the excellent friend (of Uṣā) brought Aniruddha to the harem of virgins. The guards came to know that he was indulging in sexual intercourse with Uṣā. They went to their king and intimated everything to him.

7. Aniruddha the destroyer of heroic enemies seized a great iron beam and killed the army of servants sent against him by that noble king.

8-10. When they were killed, Bāṇa himself came there seated in his chariot. He endeavoured to slay him. Fighting to his ability (Bāṇa) was defeated by the heroic (Aniruddha). Thereupon Bāṇa fought with him by means of his Māyā. Discharging a serpent missile by means of mantras he bound the scion of the family of Yadu. At Dvāravatī the members of the family of Yadu began to cry aloud—“Where has Aniruddha gone?” Nārada told them that he had been imprisoned by Bāṇa.

11-12. The Yādavas had already heard that Aniruddha was carried off by a woman who was an expert in Yogic lore, to Śoṇitapura[1] the capital city of the asura monarch Bāṇa. Hence, they believed in what Nārada said. Accordingly lord Kṛṣṇa mounted Garuḍa who came to him immediately on being remembered and went to Bāṇa’s city accompanied by Balarāma and Pradyumna.

13. At the entrance to the city he had a fight with the very powerful Pramathas. After destroying them, he went near Bāṇa’s city.

14. Then the great Jvara (Fever) pertaining to Maheśvara who had three feet and three heads, fought severely with the Śārṅga-bow-bearing lord for the sake of protecting Bāṇa.

15-18. Due to contact with Kṛṣṇa’s body Balarāma too experienced the heat originating from a touch of its Bhasman. Hence, he kept his eyes closed together with him. He began to fight with the Śārṅga-bearing lord. But (the Jvara of Maheśvara) was dispelled from the body of Kṛṣṇa by the Jvara pertaining to Viṣṇu. On seeing him (i.e., Maheśvara Jvara) agitated due to the painful blow of Nārāyaṇa’s arms, lord Pitāmaha said “kindly excuse him.” Thereupon saying—“O I have already forgiven”, lord Kṛṣṇa dissolved the Vaiṣṇava Jvara within himself.

19. Lord Kṛṣṇa said thus to Maheśvara Jvara—“Those who remember our fight between us shall be free from fever. After saying this lord Kṛṣṇa went away.

20. Then the lord defeated and destroyed the five fires. Viṣṇu playfully smashed the army of Asuras.

21. Then the son of Bali, Śaṅkara and Kārttikeya assisted by the entire army of asuras fought with Kṛṣṇa.

22. The fight between Kṛṣṇa and Śaṅkara was very terrible. The worlds were agitated when they were harassed by weapons and missiles.

23. The battle raged furiously. Then Devas thought:—“Certainly the dissolution of the universe has arrived”.

24. Kṛṣṇa made Śaṅkara burst open Jṛmbhaṇa missile. Thereby the Pramathas and Daityas perished all round.

25. Śaṅkara who was attacked by Jṛmbhā (Yawning) sat within his chariot. He could not fight with Kṛṣṇa of unimpaired activities.

26. Guha’s vehicle was destroyed by Garuḍa. He himself was affected by Pradyumna’s missile. His trident was blown off by a hissing angry sound of Kṛṣṇa. So Guha fled away from the field.

27-28. When Śaṅkara burst open, (?) when the army of the asuras perished, when the army of the Pramathas was destroyed by the lord with the bow named Śārṅga and when Guha was defeated, Bāṇa came there to fight with the soldiers of Kṛṣṇa’s son. He was seated in a great chariot where the horses were managed by Nandīśa.

29. Balarāma of great prowess hit the army of Bāṇa by means of many arrows. Pradyumna did not go astray from virtue. He abided by the rules of war as laid down in the śāstras.

30. Bāṇa saw his army crushed and suppressed by Bala by means of his iron club after being dragged by the tip of his ploughshare, as well as by the arrows of the discus-bearing lord.

31-32. Then there was a brief encounter of Kṛṣṇa with Bāṇa. They hurled blazing arrows at each other piercing through their armour. Kṛṣṇa cut off those arrows discharged by Bāṇa by means of his own arrows. Bāṇa hit and pierced Kṛṣna and the discus-bearing lord pierced Bāṇa.

33. Then, O brahmins, Bāṇa and Kṛṣṇa were eager to conquer each other. They hurled missiles and iron clubs at each other.

34-35. When all the weapons were being cut off, when the miraculous missiles became ineffective, Kṛṣṇa decided to kill Bāṇa with a massive use of force. Thereupon, lord Kṛṣṇa whose splendour was like that of a hundred suns and who was the enemy of Asuras took up Sudarśana, his discus.

36. Even as Kṛṣṇa, the enemy of Madhu, was going to hurl discus for the destruction of Bāṇa, the naked goddess Koṭarī, the demoniac lore, appeared before him.

37. On seeing her in front Kṛṣna closed his eyes and discharged Sudarśana against Bāṇa in order to cut off the thousand arms of his enemy.

38-40. Hurled by Acyuta, the discus gradually cut off the arms of Bāṇa. When the arms were cut off the discus immediately returned to the hands of the lord. Because of the hurling of many weapons and missiles by the Asura, Kṛṣṇa decided to hurl the discus at Bāṇa for slaying him. When this was known by the enemy of Tripuras, the husband of Umā, he rushed at Kṛṣṇa. On seeing the blood gushing out from the body of Bāṇa because his arms had been cut off, Rudra spoke with gentle words of overtures,

Rudra said:

41. O Kṛṣṇa, O Kṛṣṇa, O lord of the universe, I know that you are Puruṣottama the great lord, the great Ātman the greatest being without beginning or without end.

42. Your sport inasmuch as you take up physical forms among Devas, animals and human beings, is characterised by the slaying of Daityas.

43. Be pleased, O lord, fearlessness (freedom from fear) has been offered to Bāṇa by me. The words uttered by me should not be falsified by you.

44. He has grown old in serving me and having my support. O unchanging one, it is not your fault. (?) Boons have been granted to this Daitya by me. Hence, I request for your forbearance.

Vyāsa said:

45. Thus requested, Kṛṣṇa became delighted as evidenced by his bright face. His anger towards the Asura disappeared. He spoke to the Trident-bearing lord of Umā.

The lord said:

46. O Śaṅkara, may Bāṇa live (since) he has been granted boons by you. The discus has been withdrawn by me out of deference for your words.

47. The freedom from fear granted by you is the freedom from fear granted by me. O Śaṅkara, it behoves you to see yourself not different from me.

48-49. It is those men who had been deluded by ignorance that see all these differences. What I am, so you are. (We are identical with) this universe including Devas, Asuras and human beings.

Vyāsa said:

50. After saying this Kṛṣṇa went to that place where the son of Pradyumna had been imprisoned. When dried up by the winds of Garuḍa the serpents that fettered him perished.

He made Aniruddha sit on Garuḍa along with his wife. Thus Balarāma, Kṛṣṇa and Pradyumna came to Dvārakā.

Footnotes and references:


Śoṇitapura: This capital city of Bāṇa was protected by Śiva, Kārttikeya, Bhadrakālī, Agni and other divinities. In the battle between Śrīkṛṣṇa and Bāṇa, the former defeated all the sentries and entered the city through the northern gate. Within the fort Bāṇa was defeated. Śrīkṛṣṇa, then released Aniruddha and Uṣā from their prison.

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