Dasama skandha of potana`s bhagavata purana a literal Translation into English (Part I)

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35. Krishna Lifting Govardhanagiri

Having spoken those words, Hari, who put the earth aloft earlier as Adivaraha, lifted gracefully and playfully Govardhanagiri with one hand, like an elephant lifting a budding lotus, causing thereby joy to all the three worlds (913, 914). To Hari who can throw up the entire gamut of universes with power as effortlessly as hurling of play-balls, the process of up-rooting a hill and lifting it is a casual act and not one of note-worthiness (915). Like a small boy playfully imagining a flower-bunch to be an umbrella and holding it by hand, Krishna smilingly lifted the huge mountain Govardhana and held it by his right hand.To escape the devastating hail-storm emerging from the clouds, he held the mountain as a huge umbrella for the terrified Gopikas, Gopakas and the cattle (917).

Krishna, the chaplet of Gopalakas, said to the Gopa-folks while holding the mountain as an umbrella, “Mother! Come! Father! Come! The toiling Gopakas! Come! Come! Listen! You come and stay under the hill with your cattle at a place of your liking (919)! My folks! Do not hesitate to come under the hill thinking that I am a mere boy, that the hill is too big and whether I am able to hold it or not. Even if the earth with the entire gamut of mountains, oceans and living entities were to fall on me, my finger holding the hill does not falter.You all can stay happily under the hill (920).”

Hearing those words of Hari, the Gopakas whole-heartedly had their belief in him. They continued to remain in their places along with their sons, wives, friends and others and also the cattle. Under the eye-sight of Janardana, comparable to a graceful rain of nectar, they transcended the pangs of hunger and thirst enjoying narration and listening of stories of Krishna (921). The lifted mountain, functioning as an umbrella, was cutting across the evil pride of the wrecker of mountains, Devendra. It was effulgent as a saviour of people tormented by torrents of rain caused by the devastating clouds. For the mountain-umbrella, the supporting staff was the hand of Hari himself, the tip of the hill functioned as the top-most projection of the umbrella, the nicely-draining water-droplets appeared as the pearl-network hanging from the edges of the umbrella and the slanting looks of the Gopikas coupled with their smile provided the ruby glittering (922). Oh! King! In the hands of the lotus-eyed lord , the mighty hill looked like a lotus and the cluster of clouds surrounding it appeared like a group of Bhramaras (923).The torrential rain continued incessantly for seven days and seven nights under the orders of Devendra, the killer of the demon Bala. The Gopa-folks survived under the mountain-umbrella without getting affected even the least by the rain (924).

The hill was thus borne by Hari for seven days and seven nights. The destroyer of mountains, Indra got tired and disgusted and was astonished by hearing the noble deeds of Krishna. With his desire getting unfulfilled he became frustrated and departed with the clouds following him. On hearing that the entire surface of the sky became once again the effulgent solar system, Govardhanagiridhari, Krishna, said to the Gopabalakas the following words (925) :- “The rain and gale subsided. The rivers are no longer in spate and consequently the speed of flow of water came down. Go out with your sons, daughters-in-law, wives and cows from below the surface of the mountain (926)!”

Hearing those words, all the Gopa-folks came out from below the mountain with their carts, other implements and cows. Achuta put the mountain down immediately at its original place. All the Gopikas embraced Krishna, complimented him appropriately and blessed. They showered Akshatas on him wishing him long-life and gave him fistfuls of curd-rice. Nanda, Balabhadra, Rohini and Yasoda embraced him and uttered words of blessing. Sidhas, Sadhyas and Gandharvas showered flowers. Devtas blew conches and trumpets. Tumbura and prominent Gandharvas sang (927).

Oh!King! While the Pallava women-folk were singing all of his stories, the lotus-eyed lord reached the village leisurely along with Balarama and other Pallavas (928). In that context the Gopakas recollected Krishna`s past-life, got astonished and spoke to Nanda the following words (929) :-

“While he was just a baby unable even to open his eyes, he killed a demon after suckling milk from her breasts. As a one-year old baby, he flew up, caught hold of the neck of demon Trinavarta, swung him down and killed. As a three-year old cute baby, he kicked down demon Sakata in anger. As a boy he was tied down to a grinding-stone by his mother in anger. He dragged the stone and uprooted with it Yamalarjuna trees. He tore apart demon Bakasura while he was grazing cows and calves. Demon Vatsa was killed by him using a tree as a weapon. With strength he killed a demon called Kara. If one examines his acts critically does he appear like a mere human-being (930)? With audacity he got Pralambasura killed by Balarama. He swallowed a dangerous forest-fire. By crushing effortlessly Kaliya with his feet his haughtiness was removed. Without killing he made Kaliya leave the lake adjacent to river Yamuna (931). How fragile is normally a seven-year old boy? What a miracle it is for all of us to find him lifting with one hand a mountain as effortlessly as an elephant playfully lifting a lotus (932). Oh! Nanda! Oh! Gopa-king! Are the accomplishments of your son possible for human beings? Your son is super-human (933)!”

On seeing them and hearing their words, Nanda recollected the secret told by sage Garga. He said, “Yes! Undoubtedly Krishna is a reincarnation of the saviour of the universe, Narayana. I think so in my heart of hearts!” Hearing those words the Gopakas were astonished and worshipped Krishna as an embodiment of the ever-lasting divinity (934).

Having seen Hari rescuing the shep-herds and the cows tormented by rain-water, by lifting a mountain with his hand, Devendra came down with humility from Amaravati keeping Kamadhenu in front of him. He relinquished his pride that he was the ruler of the kingdom consisting of the three Lokas and came to visit Krishna, an embodiment of immense kindness, who removed the ego of evil-minded kings (935). Having come to visit Nandakumara, Indra, wearing a crown matching in effulgence with the sun, prayed to his lotus-shaped feet which decorated the hearts of saints and saved those subservient to them (936). Saluting thus, Indra said to Hari the following words, folding his palms, comparable to lotuses :- “Oh! The best among men! Your form is an embodiment of Satvaguna and peace! It is devoid of Rajo- and Tamogunas. It is eternal. It is Tapomaya. You are therefore devoid of qualities generated by Maya. You transcend the three Gunas. Hence bad qualities like Lobha emanating from those Gunas are absent in you . In spite of that you possess the equipment to punish the bad and to protect the good. You are the head of all the universes. You are the teacher of all. You are the father of all. You wear forms of your choice to do well to all and to terrify the wicked who think them to be the heads of Lokas. Oh! Lord! You are the head of the rulers of Lokas (937, 938).

Oh! Consort of Indira! If you punish low intellectuals like me, the others of this type give up their ego and follow the path of elders judiciously (939). Oh! God eternal! Idiots like me ruling a solitary Loka, consider themselves in their pride that they are all-powerful rulers of all the worlds. Such persons are certainly incapable of knowing your supremacy (940). Oh! Vasudeva! Krishna! Bestower of boons! Independent lord! An embodiment of superior knowledge! One with a great soul! A personification of all virtues! Life behind the seeds of entire creation! Lord spotless in purity! Many salutations to you (941)! Oh! Ruler of all! Madhava! I failed to assess your ability. On the pretext that ritual for me was not performed by Pallavas I submerged your cattle by a terrifying intense rain. Your power nullified my attempt. I am your devotee. You condone my mistake and bestow your graceful looks on me (942). Oh! Lord! You are omnipresent! Even persons like lord Brahma are incapable of knowing your powers. I am totally engrossed in ignorance. I excel in the false ego that I am the ruler of all the three Lokas. I am filled with a high measure of false knowledge.I am the best among those who relinquished humility. I am at the top among the bad and proud people.I am too insignificant to fathom the depths of your glory in enacting strange mysterious transcendental playful acts (943).”

On hearing those words of Indra, the lord said to him smilingly the following words in a voice comparable in majesty to the sounds of the clouds : - “Oh! Ruler of Devtas! Destroyer of Jambasura! Being blinded by affluence you are extremely conceited. To eliminate it I got your ritual stopped. Those conceited by wealth forget about me, the one enforcing punishment for it. In reality I make the one whom I want to save, lose his wealth (944, 945). Oh! Possessor of Iravata as Vahana! You execute your authority within the limits of my commands. Do not get conceited due to wealth. May good happen to you! You go now! (946)”

After Krishna spoke those words to Indra, Kamadhenu, surrounded by cows , paid obeisance and said the following words addressing the lord who is another Kamadhenu to devotees (947) :-“Oh! Visweswara! Viswabhavana! Viswarupa! The lord being worshipped by ascetics! Hari! Kindly listen! Now we are blessed by you. We got permanently immense happiness (948) .Oh! Lord! You are the supreme lord for us. You are our ruler. For ensuring happiness to Brahmins, cows, Devtas and ascetics I was entrusted by lord Brahma to pay obeisance to you. You are the primordial lord to eliminate the intense load inflicted on the earth (949)”.

Afterwards the head of Devtas, Indra along with his mother and a group of pious ascetics performed Abhisheka to Govinda, the lord who defeated the demons in war and who was the saviour of the virtuous, with waters of river Mandakini brought by elephant Iravata through its trunk and the milk of Kamadhenu (950). On the day of Abhisheka to Vasudeva, Tumbura, Narada and others, Sidhas, Charas and Gandharvas sang songs on stories of Vishnu. The women of heaven danced. Devtas showered attractive flowers. There was jubilation in all the three Lokas. Milk overflowed from the udders of milch-cows. The rivers were in spate with inflow of new waters. Honey was generated in all the trees. All the creepers were full with fruits and flowers. The mountains were effulgent with reflections from precious stones. The living beings gave up their natural enmity and became friendly among themselves (951). After oblations to lord Govinda, the head of cattle and Gopakas, Indra took leave of the lord and departed for heaven along with the group of Devtas (952).


Potana Bhagavatamu, with Lucid Prose, Fourth Volume – First Part of Tenth Skanda : Edited by Jandhyala Papayya Sastry, T.T.D. Religious Publication Series No. 639-D and Published by I. Y. R. Krishna Rao, Executive Officer, Tirumal Tirupati Devaasthanams, Tirupati., 2010

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