The Shiva Purana (English translation)

by J. L. Shastri | 1970 | 616,585 words

This page relates “fight among bana, shiva, krishna and others” as found in the Shiva-purana, which, in Hinduism, represents one of the eighteen Mahapuranas. This work eulogizes Lord Shiva as the supreme deity, besides topics such as cosmology and philosophy. It is written in Sanskrit and claims to be a redaction of an original text consisting of 100,000 metrical verses.

Chapter 54 - The fight among Bāṇa, Śiva, Kṛṣṇa and others

Vyāsa said:—

1. O excellent sage, when Aniruddha the grandson of Kṛṣṇa was abducted by the daughter of Kumbhāṇḍa what did Kṛṣṇa do? Please narrate it to me.

Sanatkumāra said:—

2. O excellent sage, on hearing the woeful cries of his women when Aniruddha had gone off suddenly, Kṛṣṇa too became vexed.

3. The four months of the rainy season thus went by when his relatives and Viṣṇu could not see Aniruddha and so they bewailed.

4. On hearing from Nārada about the imprisonment and activities of Aniruddha the Vṛṣṇis, followers of Kṛṣṇa, became dejected.

5. On hearing everything, Kṛṣṇa immediately called Garuḍa and went to the city of Śoṇita eagerly for fighting.

6. Pradyumna, Yuyudhāna, Sāmba, Sāraṇa, Nanda, Upananda, Bhadra and others following Rāma and Kṛṣṇa went there.

7. They were accompanied by twelve Akṣauhiṇīs. They, the chief of Sātvatas[1] laid a siege all round the city of Bāṇa.

8. On seeing the parks, fortresses, ceilings and minarets of the city thus broken, Bāṇa became infuriated and set forth with an equal number of armies.

9. In order to help Bāṇa, lord Rudra accompanied by his son and the Pramathas rode on the bull Nandin and arrived there to fight.

10. A tumultuous fight, wonderfully causing horripilation ensued between Kṛṣṇa and his followers on the one hand and the supporters of Bāṇa, Rudra etc. on the other.

11. The fight was between Kṛṣṇa and Śiva; Pradyumna and Kārttikeya; Kumbhāṇḍaka and Kūpakarṇa, Bala and Saṃyuga.

12. Sāmba fought with Bāṇa’s son; Sātyaki with Bāṇa; Garuḍa with Nandin and groups of one side fought with the groups of the other.

13. Brahmā and other gods, sages, Siddhas, Cāraṇas, Gandharvas and celestial damsels came there in aerial chariots to witness the affray.

14. O best of brahmins, a terrible fight ensued between the members of the Yadu family with the groups of Pramathas ending with “Revatīs”.

15. Kṛṣṇa, his brother Rāma and the intelligent Pradyumna, fought an unequalled fight with the Pramathas.

16-17. The fight continued with Agni, Yama, Varuṇa, Vimukha, Tripāda, Jvara and Kārttikeya and groups of Pramathas with the Vṛṣṇis. It was terrible and frightful causing horripilation.

18. There was fight with the shameless women too, several groups of terrifying Koṭarīs at every step, not far from one another.

19. Kṛṣṇa routed the Bhūtas, Pramathas and Guhyakas, the followers of Śiva with sharp-pointed arrows discharged from his bow.

20. The heroes Pradyumna and others jubilant over the war destroyed the armies of the enemies and fought terribly.

21. On seeing his army being scattered, Śiva became highly infuriated and roared terribly.

22. On hearing that, Śiva’s Gaṇas too shouted and fought. They suppressed the opponents with their strength increased by Śiva’s brilliance.

23. Kṛṣṇa discharged separate types of missiles from his bow towards the trident-bearing lord Śiva who without showing any dismay quelled them directly.

24. They discharged Brahmā-missile in counter to Brahmā missile; the mountain-missile to the wind-missile; the cloud-missile to the fire-missile and Śiva-missile to the Nārāyaṇa missile.

25. Defeated by the opponents, the army of Kṛṣṇa fled, O Vyāsa; it could not face the full refulgence of Śiva.

26. O sage, when his army was routed, lord Kṛṣṇa, the scorcher of enemies, discharged terrible fever missile named ‘cold’.[2]

27. O sage, when the army of Kṛṣṇa was routed, the cold fever missile of Kṛṣṇa rushed at Rudra blazing the ten quarters.

28. On seeing that coming, lord Śiva discharged his own fever missile. The two fever missiles fought each other.

29. Oppressed by the fever missile of lord Śiva, the fever missile of Śiva cried aloud. Unable to secure succour elsewhere, it eulogised the bull-bannered lord.

30. The delighted lord Śiva, favourably disposed to those who seek refuge, eulogised by Viṣṇu’s fever missile, spoke to the cold fever missile of Viṣṇu.

Lord Śiva said:—

31. “O cold fever, I am delighted. Leave off your fear from my fever. There is no fear from fever to him who remembers this anecdote.

Sanatkumāra said:—

32. Thus advised, the fever missile of Viṣṇu went away after bowing to Śiva. On seeing that activity, Kṛṣṇa was surprised and dismayed.

33. When attacked by the arrows of Pradyumna, the infuriated Kārttikeya, the slayer of Daityas, hit Pradyumna with his spear.

34. When hit by Kārttikeya’s spear, Pradyumna, though very strong, shed blood from his limbs and fled from the battle ground.

35. Hit with various missiles by Kumbhāṇḍa and Kūpakarṇa, Balabhadra though strong did not stay there. He fled from the battle-field.

36. Garuḍa, took up a thousand bodies and drank up the water from the great sea. He then began to work havoc by showering the sea-waters through Āvarta clouds.

37. Then the infuriated bull, the powerful vehicle of lord Śiva, hit him with great force by means of his horns.

38. When his limbs were shattered by the blows of his horns, Garuḍa was dismayed. He forsook Viṣṇu and fled from the battle ground immediately.

39. When the situation was like this, lord Kṛṣṇa, dismayed by Śiva’s refulgence spoke to the charioteer suddenly.

Lord Kṛṣṇa said:—

40. O charioteer, listen to my words. Drive the chariot immediately to lord Śiva so that I shall speak to him.

Sanatkumāra said:—

41. Thus commanded by Viṣṇu, the charioteer Dāruka, the foremost of persons of good qualities, drove the chariot immediately to lord Śiva.

42. Lord Kṛṣṇa resorted to Śiva, favourably disposed to his devotees, bowed to him with devotion with palms joined in reverence and submitted as follows.

Lord Kṛṣṇa said:—

43. O lord Śiva, lord of the gods, favourably disposed to those who seek refuge in you, I bow to you the great lord, the soul of all and of infinite power.

44. I bow to you, the cause of the origin, sustenance and dissolution of the universe, the sole form of perfect knowledge, the symbol of Brahman, the highly quiescent, the supreme lord.

45-46. The time, the divinity, the activity, the individual soul, the nature, the solid objects, the vital airs, the soul, the groups of created beings, the series of seeds and sprouts everything is your illusion, O lord of the universe. I resort to you the cause of those things, the great lord.

47. By the different forms assumed by you sportively, you, the lord of the worlds, support the gods and others and destroy those who go astray.

48. You are the Brahman, the great light that is hidden in the Śabda Brahman which the purified souls see like the sole firmament.

49. You are the primordial Puruṣa without a second. You are the fourth being,[3] the vision of the soul. You appear as undergoing change though you are the lord, the cause without another cause unto you.

50. O lord, for the manifestation of all the attributes, you appear different through your illusion, O supreme lord.

51. O lord, just as the unconcealed sun illuminates many of his reflections by his brilliance, so you too do, being the great illuminating light.

52. O great one, O self-illuminated lord Śiva, you brighten the attributes by means of the attribute itself, though you are not encompassed by the attribute.

53. People whose intellects are deluded by your illusion become attached to sons, wives, abodes etc. and sink and float in the ocean of sin.

54. After deriving this divinely bestowed human habitation, if a person does not control his sense-organs and respect your feet he is to be pitied. He deceives his own self.

55. O lord, it is at your bidding that I have come here to cut off the hands of Bāṇa. This haughty Bāṇa was cursed by you who are the destroyer of haughtiness.

56. O lord, please return from the battle-ground. Let not your curse go in vain. O lord, command me to cut off the hands of Bāṇa.

Sanatkumāra said:—

57. O great sage, on hearing these words of lord Kṛṣṇa, Śiva the supreme lord who was propitiated by Kṛṣṇa’s eulogy, replied:—

Lord Śiva said:—

58. O dear, what you say is true; the lord of the Daityas has been cursed by me. It is at my bidding that you have come here to cut off the hands of Bāṇa.

59. O lord of Lakṣmī, what can I do? O Viṣnu, I am subservient to my devotees always. How can there be the chopping of Bāṇa’s arms while I am watching?

60. Hence at my bidding make me benumbed by means of your Jṛṃbhaṇa missile.[4] Thereafter you can do as you please and be happy.

Sanatkumāra said:—

61. O great sage, thus urged by Śiva, lord Kṛṣṇa was surprised. He returned to the battlefield and rejoiced.

62. O Vyāsa, Viṣnu an expert in the use of various missiles fixed the Jṛmbhaṇa missile to the bow and discharged it at Śiva.

63. After enchanting Śiva, and making him benumbed by means of the Jṛmbhaṇa missile, Viṣṇu slew the army of Bāṇa by means of swords, daggers and clubs.

Footnotes and references:


Sātvatas were a family of Yādava race whose founder was Yadu, son of King Yayāti. King Sātvata founded a branch of the Yādavas after his name. He had four sons: (1) Bhajin Bhajamāna (2) Devavṛdha (3) Andhaka mahābhoja and (4) Vṛṣṇi. Kṛṣṇa, the celebrated hero of the Mahābhārata was born in the Sātvata-Vṛṣṇi family.


The mention of the missile of cold fever and of the counter missile to ward it off indicates the heights that India had attained in military science.


Śiva represents the fourth (Turya) state of the soul, the pure, impersonal and unconditioned. The other three states of the soul viz. the state of wakefulness (jāgrata) dream (svapna) and unconsciousness (suṣupti) are impure, personal and conditioned by physical envelope.


Jṛmbhaṇa missile is said to possess the potency of benumbing the activities of the person against whom it is used.