Harivamsha Purana

by Manmatha Nath Dutt | 1897 | 293,872 words | ISBN-10: 8178542188 | ISBN-13: 9788178542188

This page is entitled “narada’s advice and indra’s answers” and represents Chapter 71 of the second book (‘Vishnu Parva’) of the Harivamsa (English translation in Prose). The Harivamsha Purana narrates the lineage and life-story of Krishna (Hari). Although not officially mentioned in the list of Puranas, this book includes topics such as geology, creation theory, time (manvantaras), ancient historical legends and accounts of royal dynasties.

Chapter 71 - Narada’s Advice and Indra’s Answers

1. Vaishampayana said:—O delighter of the Kurus, on having heard the words of the lord of the celestials, the pious-minded Narada that most eloquent speaker conversant with the essence of virtue, thus spoke:—. "

2. O slayer of Vala, O mighty-armed one, I am much concerned in you; and therefore must say what will be conducive to your good.

3. As I was aware of your attitude, I told the son of Vasudeva that in days gone by, you had not even given the Parijata tree to the mighty god Siva.

4. I tell you truly that I showed him numerous reasons (for not taking down the Parijata tree), but he paid no heed whatever to them. '

5. I am the younger brother of Indra and therefore I claim indulgence at his hands'—these words did that lotus-eyed one tell me in reply.

6. Repeatedly did I, O god, show him numerous reasons; but O slayer of Vritra, still his mind did not change.

7. Moreover, O god, the slayer of Madhu that foremost of men, did as if in anger say at the conclusion of his address, '

8. Neither the gods, nor the Gandharvas, nor the Rakshas, nor the Asuras, nor the foremost of the Pannagas, will succeed in attempting to thwart me out of my pledge; O sage mayst you be attended with all blessings!

9. If Purandara thus requested by you in a conciliatory manner does not give the Parijata tree to me, then will I hurl my mace at the breast of Purandera on which Saci besmears fragrant ointments.'

10. O Mahendra, this is the firm determination your brother Upendra; now do you do what seems proper and just to you with regard to this matter.

11. Hear from me, O lord of the celestials, words that will be conducive to your welfare, as I speak them; it seems to me better to allow the Parijata to be transplanted to Dvarka."

12. O ruler of men, thus spoken to by Narada, the destroyer of all, the thousand-eyed deity, inflamed with wrath, thus addressed him in a clear and distinct voice. "

13. O you of ascetic wealth, if Kesava is bent to behave thus towards me his innocent elder brother, then what harm indeed can he do unto me!

14. O Narada, in times past Krishna committed many acts offensive and insulting to me; I did put up with them all only remembering that he is my brother.

15. On the occasion of the burning of the Khandava forest when he drove Arjuna’s chariot, he prevented my clouds from extinguishing the raging conflagration.

16. He committed an act unpleasant and inimical to my interests by lifting up the Govardhana mountain. When again at the time of slaying Vritra I sought his assistance,

17. he replied to me saying—'I am impartial and look equally upon all creatures.' Then I slew Vritra with the help of the strength of my own arms.

18. You also knowest well, O sage, that when ever war breaks out between the gods and the Asuras Krishna always fights as it pleases his sweet will (ignoring my authority altogether).

19. What is the use of speaking much on the subject? Do you endeavour to maintain an amicable feeling between ourselves. O Narada, you are my witness; a rupture among our relatives is remote from my thoughts.

20. Keshava might well have been prepared to hurl his mace at my breast (there is nothing untoward in it); but no propriety could be conceived as to why the name of Puloma’s daughter was uttered in that connection.

21. Our father, the almighty Kasyapa, together with our mother Adity has gone for a sojourn into the waters. This matter ought to be laid before them,

22. namely, that my brother Krishna of uncontrolled Self, filled with ignorance and arrogance, has, through the instigation of his wife, abused me his elder brother (who ought to command his regard and obedience).

23. O twice-born one, fie on women, and fie on the influence of arrogance, in as much as, O Vipra, even Vishnu, instigated by his wife, has this day insulted me.

24-25. O mighty sage, it is really surprising that Krishna, overcome by passion and lust, did not pay the slightest regard to the race of our father Kasyapa or to the race of the Sukshnas whence our mother Aditi has sprung, or to the fact of my being his elder brother or to my celestial sovereignty and the respect in which I am held by the gods.

26. O sinless one, Brahma told me in days past, that a well-behaved and wise brother is to me esteemed more than thousands of sons and wives.

27. My father, one of the creators, and my mother Aditi also told me that there is no friend like the brothers, other people are only useless seekers of livelihood.[1]

28. My father Kasyapa also said, that like the uterine brothers there is no friend in the worlds. The Danavas of sinful propensities fight with me because they are not my brothers.

29. What I am now going to tell, O Vipra, ought not be related by me for it contains my own praise; but I may be excused it;I relate it to-day only because there has been an occasion for it.

30-32. O sinless one, in the days of yore, when through the virtue of the boon bestowed on them, the bow-string of Vishnu was not cut off by certain bow-men, and whence thereafter, O foremost of mighty sages, his head was severed off his trunk, it was I who entered into and sustained his body; and when again, with the energy of the Rudras, I succeeded in carefully replacing his head on his trunk, it was Acyuta himself who said that I am the best and foremost among the gods; and then, O Narada, once more remounting his bow with a new string Keshava stood proudly (to face his antagonists).

33. O sage, what will my father and my mother tell me if I were to neglect Krishna then,—thinking of his only ancient affection did I, O mighty ascetic, incarnate myself in the body of Krishna.

34. O sage, I gave him the Indra’s share of the offering of a sacrifice and caused it to be Vaishnava, out of my affection for I look upon him, O Narada, as my younger brother.

35. If however unfortunately a battle takes place between me and him, it shall be he, O you of ascetic wealth that shall strike the first blow—although in other battles, I myself deal it out in as much as I am a sovereign.

36. O you conversant with the essence of religions, I have protected the persons of the regardful Keshava as my own during all his incarnations, O sinless one.

37. Dismantling this my residence Vishnu has, with these materials, constructed, O sage, his own Bhubana or world that is superior to all lokas.

38. I did not turn my face on that, O sage, out of regard for my brother, and as I always used to think that 'Krishna is a boy and deserves indulgence at my hands'.

39. My father and my mother, O Narada, cherish Govinda very much saying—'This my son is a mere child and is youngest in age'.

40. Moreover Keshava is the special favourite of my mother, and, as such, I am very jealous of him. There is not the slightest doubt that the depth of (my mother’s) affection reaches its height in Keshava.

41. I believed Keshava to be all-knowing, powerful, heroic, and respector of deserving persons; but that belief has proved to be a false one.

42. Go you, O Narada, and tell Keshava these my words; 'Challenged by my enemies I never turn back from a fight.

43. Come, if you wishest, I shall suffer what ever you mayst desire; O henpecked one, strike the first blow if you likest it.

44. O Janarddana, riding on Garuda and with a firm hand, do you deal the first blow with your Sranga mace, or discus or sword,

45. O fie, thus struck, O Keshava, I shall strike you with all my might; if, indeed, my affection does not overwhelm me in the act.'

46. Until I am conquered in a battle by the wielder of the discus Krishna, I will not, O foremost of sages, part with the Parijata tree.

47. O you of ascetic wealth, when he, being younger than I am, challenges me his elder brother to fight, for what reason should I then excuse that henpecked Hari?

48. Do you, O illustrious sage, go to Dvarka protected by Krishna, even to-day and tell Acyuta that I am prepared for the quarrel (struggle).

50. O you, of ascetic wealth, bearing in mind all my words you shalt thus speak to the slayer of Madhu;—'Until I am conquered by you I shall not even let you have a single leaf or its half of the Parijata tree.' O illustrious sage, for my pleasure you shalt also tell Acyuta fearlessly:—'It behoves you not to steal the tree deceitfully; let there be a fair fight; and fie be on crooked practices'".

Footnotes and references:


The author means that true and faithful friendship and love exist only between brothers;—between other parties it is merely a mockery, a business—that of maintenance and support. The wife loves the husband for he supports her—the old parents love their son because he is their maintainer and so forth.

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