70. Lord Krsna in Indraprastha City
16 / Lord Kåñëa in Indraprastha City
In the presence of the great sage Närada and all the other associates of Lord Kåñëa, Uddhava considered the situation and then spoke as follows: "My dear Lord, first of all let me say that the great sage Närada Muni has requested You to go to Hastinäpura to satisfy King Yudhiñöhira, Your cousin, who is making arrangements to perform the great sacrifice known as Räjasüya. I think, therefore, that Your Lordship should immediately go there to help the King in this great adventure. However, although to accept the invitation offered by the sage Närada Muni as primary is quite appropriate, at the same time, my Lord, it is Your duty to give protection to the surrendered souls. Both purposes can be served if we understand the whole situation. Unless we are victorious over all the kings, no one can perform this Räjasüya sacrifice. In other words, it is to be understood that King Yudhiñöhira cannot perform this great sacrifice without gaining victory over the belligerent King Jaräsandha. The Räjasüya sacrifice can only be performed by one who has gained victory over all directions. Therefore, to execute both purposes, we first of all have to kill Jaräsandha. I think that if we can somehow or other gain victory over Jaräsandha, then automatically all our purposes will be served. The imprisoned kings will be released, and with great pleasure we shall enjoy the spread of Your transcendental fame at having saved the innocent kings whom Jaräsandha has imprisoned.
"But King Jaräsandha is not an ordinary man. He has proved a stumbling block even to great warriors because his bodily strength is equal to the strength of 10,000 elephants. If there is anyone who can conquer this king, he is none other than Bhémasena because he also possesses the strength of 10,000 elephants. The best thing would be for Bhémasena to fight alone with him. Then there would be no unnecessary killing of many soldiers. In fact, it will be very difficult to conquer Jaräsandha when he stands with his akñauhiëé divisions of soldiers. We may therefore adopt a policy more favorable to the situation. We know that King Jaräsandha is very much devoted to the brähmaëas. He is very charitably disposed towards them; he never refuses any request from a brähmaëa. I think, therefore, that Bhémasena should approach Jaräsandha in the dress of a brähmaëa, beg charity from him, and then personally engage in fighting him. And in order to assure Bhémasena's victory, I think that Your Lordship should also accompany him. If the fighting takes place in Your presence, I am sure Bhémasena will emerge victorious because simply by Your presence everything impossible is made possible, just as Lord Brahmä creates this universe and Lord Çiva destroys it simply through Your influence.
"Actually, You are creating and destroying the entire cosmic manifestation; Lord Brahmä and Lord Çiva are only the superficially visible causes. Creation and destruction are actually being performed by the invisible time factor, which is Your impersonal representation. Everything is under the control of this time factor. If Your invisible time factor can perform such wonderful acts through Lord Brahmä and Lord Çiva, will not Your personal presence help Bhémasena to conquer Jaräsandha? My dear Lord, when Jaräsandha is killed, then the queens of all the imprisoned kings will be so joyful at their husbands' being released by Your mercy that they will all begin to sing Your glories. They will be as pleased as the gopés were when they were released from the hands of Çaìkhäsura. All the great sages, the King of the elephants, Gajendra, the goddess of fortune, Sétä, and even Your father and mother, were all delivered by Your causeless mercy. We also have been thus delivered, and we are always singing the transcendental glories of Your activities.
"Therefore, I think that if the killing of Jaräsandha is undertaken first, that will automatically solve many other problems. As for the Räjasüya sacrifice arranged in Hastinäpura, it will be held, either because of the pious activities of the imprisoned kings or the impious activities of Jaräsandha.
"My Lord, it appears that You are also personally to go to Hastinäpura to perform this great sacrifice so that demoniac kings like Jaräsandha and Çiçupäla may be conquered, the pious imprisoned kings released, and at the same time the great Räjasüya sacrifice performed. Considering all these points, I think that Your Lordship should immediately proceed to Hastinäpura."
This advice of Uddhava's was appreciated by all who were present in the assembly, and everyone considered that Lord Kåñëa's going to Hastinäpura would be beneficial from all points of view. The great sage Närada, the elderly personalities of the Yadu dynasty, and the Supreme Personality of Godhead Kåñëa Himself all supported the statement of Uddhava. Lord Kåñëa then took permission from His father Vasudeva and grandfather Ugrasena, and He immediately ordered His servants Däruka and Jaitra to arrange for travel to Hastinäpura. When everything was prepared, Lord Kåñëa especially bid farewell to Lord Balaräma and the King of the Yadus, Ugrasena, and after dispatching His queens along with their children and sending their necessary luggage ahead, He mounted His chariot, which bore the flag marked with the symbol of Garuòa.
Before starting the procession, Lord Kåñëa satisfied the great sage Närada by offering him different kinds of worshipable articles. Näradajé wanted to fall at the lotus feet of Kåñëa, but because the Lord was playing the part of a human being, he simply offered his respects within his mind, and fixing the transcendental form of the Lord within his heart, he left the assembly house by the airways. Usually the sage Närada never walks on the surface of the globe, but travels in outer space. After the departure of Närada, Lord Kåñëa addressed the messenger who had come from the imprisoned kings. He told him that they should not be worried. He would very soon arrange to kill the King of Magadha, Jaräsandha. Thus He wished good fortune to all the imprisoned kings and the messenger. After receiving this assurance from Lord Kåñëa, the messenger returned to the imprisoned kings and informed them of the happy news of the Lord's forthcoming visit. All the kings became joyful at the news and began to wait very anxiously for the Lord's arrival.
The chariot of Lord Kåñëa began to proceed, accompanied by many other chariots, along with elephants, cavalry, infantry and similar royal paraphernalia. Bugles, drums, trumpets, conchshells, horns and coronets all began to produce a loud auspicious sound which vibrated in all directions. The 16,000 queens, headed by the goddess of fortune Rukmiëédevé, the ideal wife of Lord Kåñëa, and accompanied by their respective sons, all followed behind Lord Kåñëa. They were dressed in costly garments decorated with ornaments, and their bodies were smeared with sandalwood pulp and garlanded with fragrant flowers. Riding on palanquins which were nicely decorated with silks, flags and golden lace, they followed their exalted husband, Lord Kåñëa. The infantry soldiers carried shields, swords and lances in their hands and acted as royal bodyguards to all the queens. In the rear of the procession were the wives and children of all the other followers, and there were many society girls also following. Many beasts of burden like bulls, buffaloes, mules, and asses carried the camps, bedding and carpets, and the women who were following were seated in separate palanquins on the backs of camels. This panoramic procession was accompanied by the shouts of the people and was full with the display of different colored flags, umbrellas and whisks and different varieties of weapons, dress, ornaments, helmets and armaments. The procession, being reflected in the sunshine, appeared just like an ocean with high waves and sharks.
In this way the procession of Lord Kåñëa's party advanced towards Hastinäpura (New Delhi) and gradually passed through the kingdoms of Änarta (Gujarat Province), Sauvéra (Sauret), the great desert of Räjasthän, and then Kurukñetra. In between those kingdoms there were many mountains, rivers, towns, villages, pasturing grounds and mining fields. The procession passed through all of these places in its advance. On His way to Hastinäpura, the Lord crossed two big rivers, the Dåñvaté and the Sarasvaté. Then He crossed the province of Païchäla and the province of Matsya. In this way, ultimately He arrived at Indraprastha.
The audience of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Kåñëa, is not very commonplace. Therefore, when King Yudhiñöhira heard that Lord Kåñëa had already arrived in his capital city, Hastinäpura, he became so joyful that all his bodily hairs stood on end in great ecstasy, and he immediately came out of the city to properly receive Him. He ordered the musical vibration of different instruments and songs, and the learned brähmaëas of the city began to chant the hymns of the Vedas very loudly. Lord Kåñëa is known as Håñékeça, the master of the senses, and King Yudhiñöhira went forward to receive Him exactly as the senses meet the consciousness of life. King Yudhiñöhira was the elderly cousin of Kåñëa. Naturally he had great affection for the Lord, and as soon as he saw Him, his heart became filled with great love and affection. He had not seen the Lord for many days, and therefore he thought himself most fortunate to see Him present before him. The King therefore began to embrace Lord Kåñëa again and again in great affection.
The eternal form of Lord Kåñëa is the everlasting residence of the goddess of fortune. As soon as King Yudhiñöhira embraced Him, he became free from all the contamination of material existence. He immediately felt transcendental bliss, and he merged in an ocean of happiness. There were tears in his eyes, and his body shook in ecstasy. He completely forgot that he was living in the material world. After this, Bhémasena, the second brother of the Päëòavas, smiled and embraced Lord Kåñëa, thinking of Him as his own maternal cousin, and thus he was merged in great ecstasy. Bhémasena also was so filled with ecstasy that for the time being he forgot his material existence. Then Lord Çré Kåñëa Himself embraced the other three Päëòavas, Arjuna, Nakula and Sahadeva. The eyes of all three brothers were inundated with tears, and Arjuna began to embrace Kåñëa again and again because they were intimate friends. The two younger Päëòava brothers, after being embraced by Lord Kåñëa, fell down at His lotus feet to offer their respects. Lord Kåñëa thereafter offered His obeisances to the brähmaëas present there, as well as to the elderly members of the Kuru dynasty, like Bhéñma, Droëa and Dhåtaräñöra. There were many kings of different provinces such as Kuru, Såïjaya and Kekaya, and Lord Kåñëa duly reciprocated greetings and respects with them. The professional reciters like the sütas, mägadhas and vandinas, accompanied by the brähmaëas, began to offer their respectful prayers to the Lord. Artists and musicians like the Gandharvas, as well as the royal jokers, began to play their drums, conchshells, kettledrums, véëäs, mådaìgas, and bugles, and they exhibited their dancing art in order to please the Lord. Thus the all-famous Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Kåñëa, entered the great city of Hastinäpura, which was opulent in every respect. While Lord Kåñëa was entering the city, everyone was talking amongst themselves about the glories of the Lord, praising His transcendental name, quality, form, etc.
The roads, streets and lanes of Hastinäpura were all sprinkled with fragrant water through the trunks of intoxicated elephants. In different places of the city there were colorful festoons and flags decorating the houses and streets. At important road crossings there were gates with golden decorations, and at the two sides of the gates there were golden water jugs. These beautiful decorations glorified the opulence of the city. Participating in this great ceremony, all the citizens of the city gathered here and there, dressed in colorful new clothing, decorated with ornaments, flower garlands, and fragrant scents. Each and every house was illuminated by hundreds and thousands of lamps placed in different corners of the cornices, walls, columns, bases and architraves, and from far away the rays of the lamps resembled the festival of Dépävalé (a particular festival observed on the New Year's Day of the Hindu calendar). Within the walls of the houses, fragrant incense was burning, and smoke rose through the windows, making the entire atmosphere very pleasing. On the top of every house flags were flapping, and the gold waterpots kept on the roofs shone very brilliantly.
Lord Kåñëa thus entered the city of the Päëòavas, enjoyed the beautiful atmosphere and slowly proceeded ahead. When the young girls in every house heard that Lord Kåñëa, the only object worth seeing, was passing on the road, they became very anxious to see this all-famous personality. Their hair loosened, and their tightened saris became slack due to their hastily rushing to see Him. They gave up their household engagements, and those who were lying in bed with their husbands immediately left them and came directly down onto the street to see Lord Kåñëa. The procession of elephants, horses, chariots, and infantry was very crowded; some, being unable to see properly in the crowd, got up on the roofs of the houses. They were pleased to see Lord Çré Kåñëa passing with His thousands of queens. They began to shower flowers on the procession, and they embraced Lord Kåñëa within their minds and gave Him a hearty reception. When they saw Him in the midst of His many queens, like the full moon situated amidst many luminaries, they began to talk amongst themselves.
One girl said to another, "My dear friend, it is very difficult to guess what kind of pious activities these queens might have performed, for they are always enjoying the smiling face and loving glances of Kåñëa." While Lord Kåñëa was thus passing on the road, at intervals some of the citizens, who were all rich, respectable and freed from sinful activities presented auspicious articles to the Lord, just to offer Him a reception to the city. Thus they worshiped Him as humble servitors.
When Lord Kåñëa entered the palace, all the ladies there became overwhelmed with affection just upon seeing Him. They immediately received Lord Kåñëa with glittering eyes expressing their love and affection for Him, and Lord Kåñëa smiled and accepted their feelings and gestures of reception. When Kunté, the mother of the Päëòavas, saw her nephew Lord Kåñëa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, she became overpowered with love and affection. She at once got up from her bedstead and appeared before Him with her daughter-in-law, Draupadé, and in maternal love and affection she embraced Him. As he brought Kåñëa within the palace, King Yudhiñöhira became so confused in his jubilation that he practically forgot what he was to do at that time in order to receive Kåñëa and worship Him properly. Lord Kåñëa delightfully offered His respects and obeisances to Kunté and other elderly ladies of the palace. His younger sister, Subhadrä, was also standing there with Draupadé, and both offered their respectful obeisances unto the lotus feet of the Lord. At the indication of her mother-in-law, Draupadé brought clothing, ornaments and garlands, and with this paraphernalia they received the queens Rukmiëé, Satyabhämä, Bhadrä, Jämbavaté, Kälindé, Mitravindä, Lakñmaëä and the devoted Satyä. These principal queens of Lord Kåñëa were first received, and then the remaining queens were also offered a proper reception. King Yudhiñöhira arranged for Kåñëa's rest and saw that all who came along with Him--namely His queens, His soldiers, His ministers and His secretaries--were comfortably situated. He had arranged that they would experience a new feature of reception everyday while staying as guests of the Päëòavas.
It was during this time that Lord Çré Kåñëa, with the help of Arjuna, for the satisfaction of the fire-god, Agni, allowed Agni to devour the Khäëòava Forest. During the forest fire, Kåñëa saved the demon Mayäsura, who was hiding in the forest. Upon being saved, Mayäsura felt obliged to the Päëòavas and Lord Kåñëa, and he constructed a wonderful assembly house within the city of Hastinäpura. In this way, Lord Kåñëa, in order to please King Yudhiñöhira, remained in the city of Hastinäpura for several months. During His stay, He enjoyed strolling here and there. He used to drive on chariots along with Arjuna, and many warriors and soldiers used to follow them.
Thus ends the Bhaktivedanta purport of the Second Volume, Sixteenth Chapter, of Kåñëa, "Lord Kåñëa in Indraprastha City."