Harivamsha Purana

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

This page is entitled “citralekha unites aniruddha with usha” and represents Chapter 120 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 120 - Citralekha Unites Aniruddha with Usha

[Full title: Citralekha Unites Aniruddha with Usha: Aniruddha’s Fight with Vana’s Soldiers].

1-2. Vaishampayana said:—Having arrived at the city of Dvaraka and living near the palace of Vasudeva Citralekha began to think of the measures by which she might know how Aniruddha had been to the city of Vana. While she was thus thinking she saw the ascetic Narada engaged in meditation in the water.

3-5. Seeing him, Citralekha, having her eyes expanded with joy, approached him. Having saluted him she stood before him hanging her head down. Having blessed Citralekha Narada said:—"I wish to know truly why you have come here." Hearing it Citralekha, with folded hands, said to the celestial saint Narada worshipped of the world. "

6-15. Listen to it, O Reverend Sir. I have come here as a messenger for taking Aniruddha with me. Hear, O Muni, why I am to take him with me. A great Asura, by name Vana, lives in the city of Shonitapura. He has a most beautiful daughter by name Usha. She has been attached to that best of men, Pradyumna’s son, for he has been selected by her as her husband on account of the boon given by the goddess. I have come here to take him with me. Do what leads to my success. O great Muni, after I had taken Aniruddha to Shonitpura communicate the news to Keshava having eyes like red lotuses for truly an encounter shall take place between Krishna and Vana. Highly powerful is the great Asura Vana in battle, so Aniruddha will not be able to defeat him. The large-armed Keshava will vanquish that thousand-armed Asura. O reverend Sir, I have come to you for finding out the means by which the lotus-eyed (Keshava) may come to know of it. How shall I steal away Aniruddha and how may Keshava learn the real truth? O Sir, if you are propitiated with me I shall not have to fear Keshava. When angered the large armed Keshava can consume even the three worlds: do that by which Keshava, stricken with sorrow for his grand-son, may not consume me with a curse. You should, O celestial saint, concert a measure by which Usha may get her husband and I may not have anything to fear."

17-21. Thus addressed by Citralekha the divine Narada said to her the following sweet words:—"I offer you protection. Shorn of fear hear what I say. O you of sweet smiles, if any encounter takes place when you steal away Aniruddha to the appartment of maidens remember me. O beautiful lady, I am much fond of seeing battles and I take great pleasure in them. Accept the Tamasa learning which can infatuate all the worlds and which I have mastered by practising hard austerities." After the great saint Narada had said this, Citralekha, quick-coursing like mind, said "So be it." Thereupon having saluted the high-souled Rishi Narada she set out in the sky searching for Aniruddha’s house.

22-31. Thereupon going to the centre of Dvaravati she saw the beautiful palace of Kama. Near it she saw Airuddha’s palace. It had golden altars and pillars made of gold and sapphires. It was adorned with garlands and jairs full of water. It had beautiful figures of peacocks on the turret and had a rows of celestial buildings set with jems and corals and filled with the music of the Gandharvas. Beholding the huge palace at the centre of Dvaraka where Pradyumna’s son lived happily, Citralekha, all on a sudden, saw Aniruddha there. She saw there Kama’s son playing in the midst of highly beautiful women as the moon shines amongst the stars. Hundreds of women were attending on him. Seated like Kuvera on a most excellent beautiful seat Aniruddha was drinking Madhvika wine. There were being sung sweet songs in accompaniment with time. But Aniruddha’s mind was not attached thereto. Many accomplished ladies were dancing there but Citralekha did not see him pleased thereby. At that time his mind was not much after pleasure and he was showing dislike even for drinking. Thereupon thinking "Surely his mind is busy with the dream," Citralekhha was shorn of anxiety.

32-47. Beholding Aniruddha like Indra’s standard in the midst of those beautiful women the intelligent Citralekha thus revolved in her mind "How shall I accomplish this work? How shall we meet with well-being?" Beholding Aniruddha in the midst of the women in his palace, the illustrious Citralekha, having beautiful eyes, thought:—"By my Tamasik illusion I will overpower all except Aniruddha". Thereupon hiding herself in the sky above the palace, she, in sweet words, said to Kama’s son:—"O hero! O descendant of Yadu, is it all well with you? Have you spent well the day and evening? O large-armed son of Rati, hear, I have something to communicate to you. I have come here to inform you something of my friend Usha. O hero, I have been sent to you by Usha whom you saw in a dream and married and who has been cherishing you at her heart. O gentle one, that maiden is again and again weeping, yawning and sighing for seeing you. O hero, she will live if you go there. Forsooth, in your absence she will die. O descendant of Yadu, although thousands of women are reigning in your heart still you should hold her by the hand who cherishes you at heart. Besides while conferring on her a boon the goddess pointed to you as her becoming husband. I have given her your portrait and she has kept it on her bosom. Keeping that portrait on her person she is surviving with the hope of seeing you. O foremost of Yadus, kindly satisfy her desire. O descendant of Yadu, myself and Usha bow to you with bent heads. O hero, hear, I will describe now her birth, family, character, nature, and the history of her father. The daughter of the heroic Asura king Vana, the grand-son of Virocana who lives in the city of Shonita, seeks your hand. Her mind is devoted to you and her life depends on you. Forsooth the goddess has selected her as your becoming husband. O Kama’s son, that beautiful maiden is living with the hope of being united with you."

48-52. Hearing the words of Citralekha Aniruddha said:—"O beautiful lady, hear how I saw her in a dream. I am day and night beside myself with thinking of her beauty, weeping and other movements. O Citralekha, I wish to see my love. Therefore if I am worthy of your favour and if you wish to make friends with me take me there." The Apsara Citralekha delightedly said "Accomplished is today what my friend wanted."

48-53. Vaishampayana said:—Informed of Aniruddha’s desire the intelligent Citralekha said "So be it".

54-57. Crossing the road frequented by Siddhas and Caranas Citralekha, all on a sudden, entered into the city of Shonitpura. By virtue of her illusory powers the great Citralekha, capable of assuming forms at will, invisibly arrived where Usha was, and she then brought and showed to Usha the heroic Aniruddha, beautiful like Kandarpa, clad in a beautiful raiment and adorned with various ornaments.

58-67. Thereupon beholding him in the palace by her friend Usha was filled with surprise and conducted him to her room. Having her eyes expanded with joy on seeing her lover Usha, with Arghya, worshipped the Yadu prince in her own room. Thereupon welcoming Citralekha with sweet words, the maiden, in fear, quickly said to her:—"O you clever in work, how will this work be accomplished secretly? Everything will be well if it is finished privately. If it gets wind however our life will be in danger." Hearing it Citralekha said:—"O friend, hear what I have to say in this matter. The Providence destroys even manliness. By the favour of the goddess every thing will turn out in your favour. Besides if we carefully and secretly finish this work no body will be able to know it." Thus addressed by her friend she was consoled and said "So be it." Afterwards she said to Aniruddha—"By my good luck, that lucky person has been seen by me, who acted like a thief in a dream, and seeking whom as a lover, difficult to be found, I was stricken with sorrow. O hero, the heart of women is really tender and therefore I ask you 'Is everything well?'".

63-73. Hearing those sensible and sweet words of Usha, Aniruddha, the foremost of Yadus, replied in still sweeter words. Wiping the tears off the eyes of Vana’s daughter he smilingly said in words attracting her mind:—"O goddess, O fair one, O you of sweet words, I give you a happy tidings. Everything is well with me every where by your favour. O fair one, I had never seen this place before. Only once in a dream I came to this city of maidens. O timid girl, the words of Rudra’s consort can never be untrue, and therefore by your favour I have come to this place. Thinking that the goddess will be pleased and you will be satisfied, I have come here and sought your protection. Be you pleased".

74-76. Thus addressed by her lover, Usha, adorned with beautiful ornaments, conducted him to a private room and waited there as if stricken with great fear. Thereupon united in nuptials according to Gandharva rites they spent the day like a pair of Cakravakas. United with her husband, Aniruddha, the beautiful Usha, adorned with celestial garlands and unguents, attained to an excess of joy.

77-79. Although she lived happily with Aniruddha nobody could know it. But a few days after Vana’s guards came to know that Usha was living with Aniruddha the foremost of Yadus adorned with celestial garlands and raiments and pasted with celestial unguents. Afterwards they speedily communicated to Vana the conduct of his daughter which they had seen.

80-85. Hearing it the heroic son of Bali, Vana, the slayer of his enemies, ordered his servant soldiers to kill Aniruddha. He said:—"Do you all soon proceed and kill that sinful, wicked wretch who has sullied the character of our family. Alas, Usha being ravished our great family has been contaminated. Alas, what is the strength, patience and pride of that stupid person who has entered into my city and palace and has ravished my daughter by force though I did not give her away." Saying this Vana again urged on his soldiers. They issued out, obeying his command and putting on their coats of mail. In great anger those highly dreadful and powerful Danavas, taking up various weapons, came speedily where Aniruddha was in order to kill him.

86-89. Hearing the uproar of that approaching army the heroic son of Pradyumna said "What is this?" and rose up all on a sudden. Thereupon he saw that the soldiers, taking up various weapons, stood encircling that big house. Beholding that army, the illustrious daughter of Vana began to weep fearing the death of Aniruddha. Her eves were filled with tears. Then beholding the deer-eyed Usha cry piteously "Oh my husband! Oh my husband!" and tremble. Aniruddha said:—"May your fear disappear. O you of a beautiful waist, you need not fear as long as I am here. O illustrious lady, you have not the least ground for fear. Rather the time of your joy has arrived. If the entire collection of Vana’s servants arrives here I am not the least anxious. Witness my power to-day, O timid girl".

90. Hearing the uproar of the soldiers Pradyumna’s son rose up all on a sudden and said "What is this?"

91. Thereupon he saw the soldiers encircling with various weapons all sides of that big palace.

92. Saying this and taking up his arms Aniruddha, biting his lips in anger, speedily went where the soldiers were.

93. Thereupon understanding that an encounter would soon take place with the followers of Vana Citralekha thought of the god-like Rishi Narada.

94. Recollected by Citralekha that foremost of Munis, within a moment, arrived at the city named Shonita.

95. Stationed in the sky he said to Aniruddha:—"Do not fear, O hero, I have come to this city".

96. Thereupon beholding Narada and saluting him the highly powerful Aniruddha grew delighted and made himself ready for the battle.

97. Thereupon hearing the uproar of the soldiers he, all on a sudden, rose up like an elephant goaded with a pike.

98. Beholding that large-armed hero come down from the palace biting his lips they fled away stricken with fear.

99. Seeing it Pradyumna’s son, expert in various forms of war-fare, took up a Parigha, lying at the door of the inner appartment and hurled it at them.

100. Those soldiers, masters of fighting, struck Aniruddha with a downpour of clubs, maces, swords, darts and arrows.

101. Although completely wounded with Narachas and Parighas by those expert Danavas Pradyumna, roaring like an evening cloud, was not over-powered.

102. As the sun ranges in the midst of clouds in the sky, so he, taking up a dreadful Parigha, stood in their midst.

103. Seeing it Narada, carrying a staff and a black antelope skin, delightedly said to Aniruddha "Well-done! Well-done!"

104. Thus assailed with the dreadful Parigha by Pradyumna of incomparable power, the soldiers fled away like clouds dispersed by the wind.

105. Having driven with Parigha the Danavas from the battle-field the highly powerful hero Aniruddha delightedly set up a leonine shout as the clouds mutter in the sky after the termination of the rainy season.

106-110. Saying to the Danavas, dreadful in battle "Wait, wait"! Pradyumna’s son, the slayer of his enemies, began to smile. Thus assailed by that high-souled hero in battle they, flying from the battle-field and stricken with fear, went where Vana was. And even going near Vana, those Danavas, bathed in blood and having their eyes dilated with fear, could not enjoy peace. They began to sigh heavily again and again; they were urged on by Vana saying "No fear! No fear! O you leading Danavas, casting off fear, do you fight again." Vana again said to them who had their eyes dilated with fear:—. "

111. Throwing off your glory well known in three worlds, why are you bewildered like eunuchs?

112. Who is he, of whom you are so much afraid, you who are born in well known families and who are clever in fighting?.

113. You need not help me to today. Avaunt, quit my sight".

114. Censuring them thus with very many harsh words the powerful Vana ordered millions of other soldiers to proceed to the battle-field,.

115. He then appointed Rudar’s army consisting of many Pramathas with various weapons in vanquishing Aniruddha.

116. Thereupon the entire firmament was covered with Vana’s soldiers having burning eyes and resembling clouds surcharged with lightning.

117. Some of them stood on the surface of the earth roaring like elephants and some appeared like clouds of the rainy season.

118. Thereupon when that huge army again assembled there were heard on all sides cries of "Wait! Wait!".

119. The hero Aniruddha ran towards them. It was really a wonder, O king, that he fought then single-handed with many.

120-121. Engaged in the encounter with the highly powerful Danavas he snatched away their Parighas and Tomaras and killed them with them. Taking up his most excellent Parigha again and again in the battle-field the highly powerful Aniruddha killed the Daityas endued with great power. At that time Kama’s son, the slayer of his enemies, taking up his Nistrimsha and leathern protector, was seen moving about in twelve ways. Thus when he moved about in the battle-field in a thousand different ways the enemies saw him as the playing Death with thousands of mouth wide open. Thereupon again assailed by Aniruddha the Asuras, bathed in blood, again fled away from the battle-field and went where Vana was. Crying plaintively those highly powerful Asuras fled away on all sides riding elephants, horses and cars. At that time the Danavas, who had fled from the battle-field, were so much overwhelmed with sorrow and fear that one fell upon the other and they all vomitted blood. While fighting with Aniruddha the Danavas experienced such a fear as they had not even while fighting with the gods in the days of yore. Some vomitted blood and some fell down on earth amongst those Danavas, resembling mountain summits who had clubs, maces and swords in their hands. Leaving behind Vana in the battle-field those vanquished Danavas fled away in fear to the welkin. Beholding his army thus routed to a man Vana was inflamed with ire like unto sacrificial fire when fuels are put to it. Ranging all over the welkin, Narada, pleased with seeing Aniruddha’s fight, began to dance exclaiming "Well-done! Well-done!"

122-134. In the meantime, powerful Vana, worked up with anger, ascending the car, brought by Kumbhanda, drove with uplifting sword where Aniruddha was. As Sakra shines with his thousand standards so that Asura appeared beautiful there holding by his thousand hands Pattishas, swords, clubs, darts and axes.

135. Having his thousand hands adorned with gloves, finger-protectors and various weapons that best of Danavas shone there in exceeding beauty.

136-137. Sending up a leonine shout in anger that Asura, having eyes reddened in anger, drew his huge bow and exclaimed "Wait! Wait!" Hearing those words of Vana in the battle-field that unconquerable son of Pradyumna saw his face and smiled.

138-141. Like unto Hiranyakashipu’s car formerly in the battle between gods and Asuras the chariot of the highly powerful Vana was drawn by thousand horses, set with hundreds of small bells, adorned with red standards and flags, coated with bear-skin and was ten furlongs in length. Beholding that Asura about to attack him, Aniruddha, the foremost of Yadus, was highly pleased and filled with anger. Like unto Narahari prepared to kill the prince of Daityas in the days of yore he stood impassionately for battle with his sword and armour on.

142-144. Vana then saw him approach with sword and leathern-protector. Beholding him thus approach on foot with dagger and leathern protector Vana attained to an excess of joy thinking that he would kill him. That Yadava had a sword in his hand, but no coat of mail. Still thinking Aniruddha invincible the powerful Vana confronted him for battle. He exclaimed in anger "Arrest him! Kill him!" While he thus cried in the battle-field Pradyumna’s son looked, in anger, at his face and laughed. At that time stricken with fear Usha began to weep. Aniruddha, consoling her with a smile, stood for the battle.

145-148. Thereupon filled with anger, Vana, desirous of killing Aniruddha, discharged in numerable arrows by name Khshudraka. Aniruddha too, desirous of defeating him, cut them off.

149-150. Thereupon desiring that he would kill Aniruddha in the battle-field Vana aimed at his head many Kshudraka arrows. Aniruddha too baffled them with his leathern-protector and appeared before him like the rising sun.

151-152. Afterwards Vana, with a thousand quick coursing and sharpened arrows, pierced the invincible son of Pradyumna to the quick. As in the forest a lion over powers an elephant on seeing it before him so the Yadu prince Aniruddha overpowered Vana.

153-155. There upon thus wounded with those arrows the larged-armed Aniruddha was inflamed with anger for displaying a wonderful feat. Assailed with that downpour of arrows and having his body covered with blood he went before Vana’s car.

156. The soldiers then assailed Pradyumna’s son with sharpened swords, maces, darts, Pattishas and Tomaras. And although sorely wounded he did not tremble.

157-159. Then leaping up in anger in that battle-field he, with his dagger, cut off the reins of Vana’s car and struck the horses. Seeing it Vana, an expert in fighting, threw him down from there with a shower of arrows, Pattishas and Tomaras. Then desisting from the fight, the Danavas, regarding Aniruddha dead, sent up a leonine shout and jumped up on the car..

160-164. Thereupon Vana, irate, took up the dreadful and grim-looking Sakti, effulgent like the sun and burning fire-brand and set with bells and discharged it not carrying for Usha’s widowhood. Beholding that life-ending Sakti about to fall on him the highly powerful Kama’s son, foremost of men, leaped up, took hold of the Sakti and pierced Vana with that. Cutting through his body it entered into the earth. Wounded sorely thereby Vana supported himself on a standard. Thereupon seeing him unconscious Kumbhanda said. "

165-167. O king of Danavas, why do you disregard this rising enemy? We see this hero has gained his aim and is impassionate. Resorting to your illusory prowess, fight with him or else he will not be slain. Do not disregard such an enemy out of indulgence. Save yourself and us by virtue of your illusory power. If you cannot defeat him by your illusory power forsooth he will kill all the Asuras. Kill him, O hero, before he destroys us all. Killing hundreds of others he will carry away Usha".

168-169. Excited at these words of Kumbhanda, the king of Danavas, the foremost of speakers, filled with great anger, gave vent to the following harsh words:—"I will kill him in this battle. I will catch him as Garuda catches a serpent". Saying this the powerful Vana, with his chariot standard and horses resembling the city of Gandharvas, disappeared therefrom showering sharpened arrows and covering him with them. Seeing Vana invisible the unconquerable son of Pradyumna, endued with manliness, cast his looks on the ten quarters. Thereupon resorting to his Tamasik learning and covered with illusory form that highly powerful Danava, filled with anger, began to discharge sharpened arrows. Gradually Pradyumna’s son was fettered with serpentine shafts. His body was chained with various serpents. Thus, with all his limbs bound with serpents Pradyumna’s son stood inert like the mount Mainaka in the battle. Although motionless like a mountain encircled by serpents of burning fangs he was not stricken with fear. And although completely fettered with serpentine shafts and rendered inactive and motionless, that one, identical with all, did not experience the least pain.

170-179. Thereupon supporting himself on a standard Vana, filled with anger, remonstrated with Aniruddha in harsh words and said:—"O Kumbhanda, kill soon this sinful wretch of his family having a vitiated soul who has sullied our character in the world". Thus addressed Kumbhanda said—"

180-182. O king, I wish to speak a few words. Hear them if you wish. Whose son is this hero endued with the prowess of Indra? Learn first from where he has come and who has brought him here. O king, when he fought in the great battle, I marked him fighting like a celestial prince. He is powerful, endued with energy and a master of weapons.

183. O foremost of Daityas, he does not deserve to be slain. He has espoused your daughter in Gandharva marriage.

184. You can take her from him because you did not give her away. You should kill him after thinking over this. Knowing this, either kill him or adore him.

185. I see a great mistake in killing him and a great virtue in protecting him. He is one of the best of men and every way deserves honor.

186. His body is fettered with serpents and still he does not feel pain. He has a good birth, valour, energy and accomplishments.

187. Behold, O king, this best of men, endued with great prowess. This powerful hero, although chained, does not care for us all.

188. Had he not been fettered by virtue of your illusory power forsooth he would have fought with all the Asuras.

189-191. He knows all forms of warfare and is more powerful than you. His person is fettered with serpents and covered with blood; still frowning with his forehead stricken with three marks he is as if aiming at us all. Reduced to such a plight and yet dependant on the strength of his own arms he does not care for any thing, O king. Who is this young man? Although gifted with two hands he still stands for an encounter with you having a thousand hands and does not think of your prowess. Who is he endued with such a prowess?

193. Besides, O king, while your daughter is attached to him you will not be able to give her away to another person. On the other hand, the hero has been known as one of great prowess.

193. O foremost of Asuras, if this desirable person is born in the family of a great man he is worthy of receiving adoration from you.

194-203. I request you, save him." Thus addressed by the high-souled Kumbhadha, Vana, the slayer of his enemies said "So be it." Thereupon handing over Aniruddha to the guards the intelligent and illustrious son of Bali repaired to his own palace. Seeing the highly powerful Aniruddha fettered through illusory power Narada, the foremost of Rishis, set out for the city of Dvaravati. Having arrived at Dvaravati through the etherial way that best of Munis communicated to Keshava, the rider of Garuda, about the imprisonment of Aniruddha. When that foremost of Rishis Narada set out for Dvaraka Aniruddha thought: "This cruel Danava will forsooth be slain in battle, for Narada will speak many things truly to Keshava the holder of conch-shell, discus and club." At that time while Usha, having her eyes full of tears on seeing her husband bound with serpents, cried he said to her:—"O timid girl, why do you weep thus? Do not fear, O you having fair eyes; you will soon see the slayer of Madhu arrive here for me. Hearing the sound of his conch shell and of the striking of his arms the Danavas will be destroyed and the Asura women will abort." Thus addressed by Aniruddha the youthful Usha was consoled and began to bewail for her ruthless father.

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