Chapter Twelve

                  The Killing of the Demon Aghasura


   This chapter describes in detail Krsna's pastime of killing Aghasura.

   One day Krsna wanted to enjoy a picnic lunch within the forest, and therefore He went out early into the forest with the other cowherd boys, accompanied by their respective groups of calves. While they were enjoying their picnic, Aghasura, the younger brother of Putana and Bakasura, appeared there, desiring to kill Krsna and His companions. The demon, who had been sent by Kamsa, assumed the form of a python, expanding himself to a length of eight miles and the height of a mountain, his mouth seeming to extend from the surface of the earth to the heavenly planets. Having assumed this feature, Aghasura lay on the road. Krsna's friends, the cowherd boys, thought that the demon's form was one of the beautiful spots of Vrndavana. Thus they wanted to enter within the mouth of this gigantic python. The gigantic figure of the python became a subject for their sporting pleasure, and they began to laugh, confident that even if this figure were dangerous, Krsna was there to protect them. In this way, they proceeded toward the mouth of the gigantic figure.

   Krsna knew everything about Aghasura, and therefore He wanted to forbid His friends to enter the demon's mouth, but in the meantime all the cowherd boys, along with their groups of calves, entered the mouth of that gigantic figure. Krsna was waiting outside, and Aghasura was waiting for Krsna, thinking that as soon as Krsna entered he would close his mouth so that everyone would die. While waiting for Krsna, he refrained from swallowing the boys. In the meantime, Krsna was thinking of how to save the boys and kill Aghasura. Thus He entered the mouth of the gigantic asura, and when He was within the demon's mouth along with His friends, He expanded His body to such an extent that the asura suffocated and died. After this, Krsna, by casting His nectarean glance upon His friends, brought them back to life, and with pleasure they all came out unhurt. Thus Krsna encouraged all the demigods, and they expressed their pleasure and happiness. For a crooked, sinful person there is no scope for sayujya-mukti, or becoming one with the effulgence of Krsna, but because the Supreme Personality of Godhead entered the body of Aghasura, by His touch this demon got the opportunity to merge into the existence of the Brahman effulgence and thus attain sayujya-mukti.

   When this pastime was performed, Krsna was only five years old. One year later, when He was six years old and He stepped into the pauganda age, this pastime was disclosed to the inhabitants of Vraja. Pariksit Maharaja inquired, "Why is it that this pastime was disclosed only after one year and yet the inhabitants of Vraja thought that it had been performed that very day?" With this question, the Twelfth Chapter ends.


                                TEXT 1




                            sri-suka uvaca

                  kvacid vanasaya mano dadhad vrajat

                  pratah samutthaya vayasya-vatsapan

                   prabodhayan chrnga-ravena caruna

                   vinirgato vatsa-purahsaro harih




   sri-sukah uvaca--Sri Sukadeva Gosvami said; kvacit--one day; vana-asaya--just to enjoy a picnic in the forest; manah--mind; dadhat--gave attention; vrajat--and went out of Vrajabhumi; pratah--early in the morning; samutthaya--waking up; vayasya-vatsa-pan--the cowherd boys and the calves; prabodhayan--to get everyone to rise, waking up and informing them; srnga-ravena--by sounding the bugle made of horn; caruna--very beautiful; vinirgatah--came out of Vrajabhumi; vatsa-purahsarah--keeping the respective groups of calves in front; harih--the Supreme Personality of Godhead.




   Sukadeva Gosvami continued: O King, one day Krsna decided to take His breakfast as a picnic in the forest. Having risen early in the morning, He blew His bugle made of horn and woke all the cowherd boys and calves with its beautiful sound. Then Krsna and the boys, keeping their respective groups of calves before them, proceeded from Vrajabhumi to the forest.


                                TEXT 2




                  tenaiva sakam prthukah sahasrasah

                 snigdhah susig-vetra-visana-venavah

                svan svan sahasropari-sankhyayanvitan

                  vatsan puraskrtya viniryayur muda




   tena--Him; eva--indeed; sakam--accompanied by; prthukah--the boys; sahasrasah--by the thousands; snigdhah--very attractive; su--beautiful; sik--lunch bags; vetra--sticks for controlling the calves; visana--horn bugles; venavah--flutes; svan svan--their own respective; sahasra-upari-sankhyaya anvitan--numbering over a thousand; vatsan--the calves; purah-krtya--keeping in front; viniryayuh--they came out; muda--with great pleasure.




   At that time, hundreds and thousands of cowherd boys came out of their respective homes in Vrajabhumi and joined Krsna, keeping before them their hundreds and thousands of groups of calves. The boys were very beautiful, and they were equipped with lunch bags, bugles, flutes, and sticks for controlling the calves.


                                TEXT 3




                      krsna-vatsair asankhyatair

                       yuthi-krtya sva-vatsakan

                       carayanto 'rbha-lilabhir

                       vijahrus tatra tatra ha




   krsna--of Lord Krsna; vatsaih--along with the calves; asankhyataih--unlimited; yuthi-krtya--assembled them; sva-vatsakan--personal calves; carayantah--executing; arbha-lilabhih--by boyhood pastimes; vijahruh--enjoyed; tatra tatra--here and there; ha--indeed.




   Along with the cowherd boys and their own groups of calves, Krsna came out with an unlimited number of calves assembled. Then all the boys began to sport in the forest in a greatly playful spirit.




   In this verse the words krsna-vatsair asankhyataih are significant. The word asankhyata means "unlimited." Krsna's calves were unlimited. We may speak of hundreds, thousands, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, millions, billions, trillions, tens of trillions, and so on, but when we go further to speak of numbers impossible for us to count, we are speaking of unlimited numbers. Such unlimited numbers are indicated here by the word asankhyataih. Krsna is unlimited, His potency is unlimited, His cows and calves are unlimited, and His space is unlimited. Therefore He is described in Bhagavad-gita as Parabrahman. The word brahman means "unlimited," and Krsna is the Supreme Unlimited, Parabrahman. Therefore, we should not consider the statements of this verse to be mythological. They are factual, but inconceivable. Krsna can accommodate an unlimited number of calves and an unlimited measurement of space. This is neither mythological nor false, but if we study Krsna's potency with our limited knowledge, that potency will never be possible to understand. Atah sri-krsna-namadi na bhaved grahyam indriyaih (Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu 1.2.109). Our senses cannot perceive how He could keep an unlimited number of calves and cows and have unlimited space in which to do so. But this is answered in the Brhad-bhagavatamrta:


                       evam prabhoh priyanam ca

                       dhamnas ca samayasya ca


                       atra kincin na durghatam


   Sri Sanatana Gosvami, in the Brhad-bhagavatamrta, states that since everything about Krsna is unlimited, nothing is impossible for Him. It is in this sense that we have to understand this verse.


                                TEXT 4







                        bhusita apy abhusayan




   phala--fruits from the forest; prabala--green leaves; stavaka--bunches; sumanah--beautiful flowers; piccha--peacock feathers; dhatubhih--very soft and colorful minerals; kaca--a kind of gem; gunja--small conchshells; mani--pearls; svarna--gold; bhusitah--although decorated; api abhusayan--in spite of being decorated by their mothers, the boys decorated themselves still more with the above-mentioned articles.




   Although all these boys were already decorated by their mothers with ornaments of kaca, gunja, pearls and gold, when they went into the forest they further decorated themselves with fruits, green leaves, bunches of flowers, peacock feathers and soft minerals.


                                TEXT 5




                      musnanto 'nyonya-sikyadin

                       jnatan arac ca ciksipuh

                       tatratyas ca punar durad

                       dhasantas ca punar daduh




   musnantah--stealing; anyonya--from one another; sikya-adin--lunch bags and other belongings; jnatan--having been understood by the proprietor of the bag; arat ca--to a distant place; ciksipuh--threw away; tatratyah ca--those who were in that place also; punah durat--then again threw farther away; hasantah ca punah daduh--when they saw the proprietor, they threw it farther away and enjoyed laughing, and when the owner sometimes cried, his bag was given to him again.




   All the cowherd boys used to steal one another's lunch bags. When a boy came to understand that his bag had been taken away, the other boys would throw it farther away, to a more distant place, and those standing there would throw it still farther. When the proprietor of the bag became disappointed, the other boys would laugh, the proprietor would cry, and then the bag would be returned.




   This kind of playing and stealing among boys still exists even in the material world because this kind of sporting pleasure is present in the spiritual world, from which this idea of enjoyment emanates. Janmady asya yatah (Vedanta-sutra 1.1.2). This same enjoyment is displayed by Krsna and His associates in the spiritual world, but there the enjoyment is eternal, whereas here, on the material platform, it is temporary; there the enjoyment is brahman, whereas here the enjoyment is jada. The Krsna consciousness movement is meant to train one how to transfer oneself from the jada to the Brahman, because human life is meant for this purpose. Athato brahma jijnasa (Vedanta-sutra 1.1.1). Krsna comes down to teach us how we can enjoy with Him on the spiritual platform, in the spiritual world. Not only does He come, but He personally displays His pastimes in Vrndavana and attracts people to spiritual enjoyment.


                                TEXT 6




                        yadi duram gatah krsno

                        vana-sobheksanaya tam

                       aham purvam aham purvam

                         iti samsprsya remire




   yadi--if; duram--to a distant place; gatah--went; krsnah--the Supreme Personality of Godhead; vana-sobha--the beauty of the forest; iksanaya--for visiting and enjoying; tam--unto Krsna; aham--I; purvam--first; aham--I; purvam--first; iti--in this way; samsprsya--by touching Him; remire--they enjoyed life.




   Sometimes Krsna would go to a somewhat distant place to see the beauty of the forest. Then all the other boys would run to accompany Him, each one saying, "I shall be the first to run and touch Krsna! I shall touch Krsna first!" In this way they enjoyed life by repeatedly touching Krsna.


                              TEXTS 7-11




                        kecid venun vadayanto

                       dhmantah srngani kecana

                      kecid bhrngaih pragayantah

                        kujantah kokilaih pare


                       vicchayabhih pradhavanto

                      gacchantah sadhu-hamsakaih

                        bakair upavisantas ca

                       nrtyantas ca kalapibhih


                        vikarsantah kisa-balan

                       arohantas ca tair druman

                      vikurvantas ca taih sakam

                        plavantas ca palasisu


                      sakam bhekair vilanghantah

                       saritah srava-samplutah

                       vihasantah praticchayah

                       sapantas ca pratisvanan


                  ittham satam brahma-sukhanubhutya

                    dasyam gatanam para-daivatena

                      mayasritanam nara-darakena

                   sakam vijahruh krta-punya-punjah




   kecit--some of them; venun--flutes; vadayantah--blowing; dhmantah--bugling; srngani--the horn bugles; kecana--someone else; kecit--someone; bhrngaih--with the bumblebees; pragayantah--singing along with; kujantah--imitating the sound of; kokilaih--with the cuckoos; pare--others; vicchayabhih--with running shadows; pradhavantah--someone running on the ground after the birds; gacchantah--going along; sadhu--beautiful; hamsakaih--with the swans; bakaih--with the ducks sitting in one place; upavisantah ca--sitting silently like them; nrtyantah ca--and dancing with; kalapibhih--with the peacocks; vikarsantah--attracting; kisa-balan--the young monkeys; arohantah ca--gliding over; taih--with the monkeys; druman--the trees; vikurvantah ca--exactly imitating them; taih--with the monkeys; sakam--along with; plavantah ca--gliding over; palasisu--on the trees; sakam--along with; bhekaih--with the frogs; vilanghantah--jumping like them; saritah--the water; srava-samplutah--became wet in the water of the river; vihasantah--laughing; praticchayah--at the shadows; sapantah ca--condemned; pratisvanan--the sound of their echoes; ittham--in this way; satam--of the transcendentalists; brahma-sukha-anubhutya--with Krsna, the source of brahma-sukha (Krsna is Parabrahman, and from Him originates His personal effulgence); dasyam--servitorship; gatanam--of the devotees who have accepted; para-daivatena--with the Supreme Personality of Godhead; maya-asritanam--for those in the clutches of material energy; nara-darakena--with Him who is like an ordinary child; sakam--along with; vijahruh--enjoyed; krta-punya-punjah--all these boys, who had accumulated the results of life after life of pious activities.




   All the boys would be differently engaged. Some boys blew their flutes, and others blew bugles made of horn. Some imitated the buzzing of the bumblebees, and others imitated the voice of the cuckoo. Some boys imitated flying birds by running after the birds' shadows on the ground, some imitated the beautiful movements and attractive postures of the swans, some sat down with the ducks, sitting silently, and others imitated the dancing of the peacocks. Some boys attracted young monkeys in the trees, some jumped into the trees, imitating the monkeys, some made faces as the monkeys were accustomed to do, and others jumped from one branch to another. Some boys went to the waterfalls and crossed over the river, jumping with the frogs, and when they saw their own reflections on the water they would laugh. They would also condemn the sounds of their own echoes. In this way, all the cowherd boys used to play with Krsna, who is the source of the Brahman effulgence for jnanis desiring to merge into that effulgence, who is the Supreme Personality of Godhead for devotees who have accepted eternal servitorship, and who for ordinary persons is but another ordinary child. The cowherd boys, having accumulated the results of pious activities for many lives, were able to associate in this way with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. How can one explain their great fortune?




   As recommended by Srila Rupa Gosvami, tasmat kenapy upayena manah krsne nivesayet (Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu 1.2.4). Somehow or other, whether one thinks of Krsna as an ordinary human child, as the source of the Brahman effulgence, as the origin of Paramatma, or as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, one should concentrate one's full attention upon the lotus feet of Krsna. That is also the instruction of Bhagavad-gita (18.66): sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam saranam vraja. Srimad-Bhagavatam is the easiest way of directly approaching Krsna. Isvarah sadyo hrdy avarudhyate 'tra krtibhih susrusubhis tat-ksanat (Bhag. 1.1.2). Diverting even a little of one's attention toward Krsna and activities in Krsna consciousness immediately enables one to achieve the highest perfection of life. This is the purpose of the Krsna consciousness movement. Lokasyajanato vidvams cakre satvata-samhitam (Bhag. 1.7.6). The secret of success is unknown to people in general, and therefore Srila Vyasadeva, being compassionate toward the poor souls in this material world, especially in this age of Kali, has given us the Srimad-Bhagavatam. Srimad-bhagavatam puranam amalam yad vaisnavanam priyam (Bhag. 12.13.18). For Vaisnavas who are somewhat advanced, or who are fully aware of the glories and potencies of the Lord, Srimad-Bhagavatam is a beloved Vedic literature. After all, we have to change this body (tatha dehantara-praptih). If we do not care about Bhagavad-gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam, we do not know what the next body will be. But if one adheres to these two books--Bhagavad-gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam--one is sure to obtain the association of Krsna in the next life (tyaktva deham punar janma naiti mam eti so 'rjuna). Therefore, distribution of Srimad-Bhagavatam all over the world is a great welfare activity for theologians, philosophers, transcendentalists and yogis (yoginam api sarvesam), as well as for people in general. Janma-labhah parah pumsam ante narayana-smrtih (Bhag. 2.1.6): if we can somehow or other remember Krsna, Narayana, at the end of life, our life will be successful.


                               TEXT 12




                 yat-pada-pamsur bahu-janma-krcchrato

                  dhrtatmabhir yogibhir apy alabhyah

                sa eva yad-drg-visayah svayam sthitah

                 kim varnyate distam ato vrajaukasam




   yat--whose; pada-pamsuh--dust of the lotus feet; bahu-janma--in many births; krcchratah--from undergoing severe austerities and penances as a way of practicing yoga, meditation, etc.; dhrta-atmabhih--by persons able to control the mind; yogibhih--by such yogis (jna-na-yogis, raja-yogis, dhyana-yogis, etc.); api--indeed; alabhyah--cannot be achieved; sah--the Supreme Personality of Godhead; eva--indeed; yat-drk-visayah--has become the object of direct vision, face to face; svayam--personally; sthitah--present in front of them; kim--what; varnyate--can be described; distam--about the fortune; atah--therefore; vraja-okasam--of the inhabitants of Vrajabhumi, Vrndavana.




   Yogis may undergo severe austerities and penances for many births by practicing yama, niyama, asana and pranayama, none of which are easily performed. Yet in due course of time, when these yogis attain the perfection of controlling the mind, they will still be unable to taste even a particle of dust from the lotus feet of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. What then can we describe about the great fortune of the inhabitants of Vrajabhumi, Vrndavana, with whom the Supreme Personality of Godhead personally lived and who saw the Lord face to face?




   We can simply imagine the great fortune of the inhabitants of Vrndavana. It is impossible to describe how, after many, many births of pious activities, they have become so fortunate.


                               TEXT 13




                   athagha-namabhyapatan mahasuras

                  tesam sukha-kridana-viksanaksamah

                 nityam yad-antar nija-jivitepsubhih

                  pitamrtair apy amaraih pratiksyate




   atha--thereafter; agha-nama--a very powerful demon by the name Agha; abhyapatat--appeared on the spot; maha-asurah--a great, extremely powerful demon; tesam--of the cowherd boys; sukha-kridana--the enjoyment of their transcendental pastimes; viksana-aksamah--being unable to see, he could not tolerate the transcendental happiness of the cowherd boys; nityam--perpetually; yat-antah--the end of the life of Aghasura; nija-jivita-ipsubhih--just to live undisturbed by Aghasura; pita-amrtaih api--although they drank nectar every day; amaraih--by such demigods; pratiksyate--was also being awaited (the demigods were also awaiting the death of the great demon Aghasura).




   My dear King Pariksit, thereafter there appeared a great demon named Aghasura, whose death was being awaited even by the demigods. The demigods drank nectar every day, but still they feared this great demon and awaited his death. This demon could not tolerate the transcendental pleasure being enjoyed in the forest by the cowherd boys.




   One may ask how Krsna's pastimes could be interrupted by a demon. Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura answers this question by saying that although the transcendental pleasure being enjoyed by the cowherd boys could not be stopped, unless they stopped the transcendental pleasure of their various activities they could not eat their lunch. Therefore at lunchtime Aghasura appeared by the arrangement of yogamaya, so that for the time being they could stop their activities and take lunch. Changing varieties are the mother of enjoyment. The cowherd boys would continuously play, then stop, and then again enjoy in a different way. Therefore every day a demon would come and interrupt their sporting pastimes. The demon would be killed, and then the boys would engage again in their transcendental pastimes.


                               TEXT 14




                 drstvarbhakan krsna-mukhan aghasurah

                   kamsanusistah sa baki-bakanujah

                   ayam tu me sodara-nasa-krt tayor

                   dvayor mamainam sa-balam hanisye




   drstva--after seeing; arbhakan--all the cowherd boys; krsna-mukhan--headed by Krsna; aghasurah--the demon by the name Aghasura; kamsa-anusistah--sent by Kamsa; sah--he (Aghasura); baki-baka-anujah--the younger brother of Putana and Bakasura; ayam--this Krsna; tu--indeed; me--my; sodara-nasa-krt--the killer of my brother and sister; tayoh--for my brother and sister; dvayoh--for those two; mama--my; enam--Krsna; sa-balam--along with His assistants, the cowherd boys; hanisye--I shall kill.




   Aghasura, who had been sent by Kamsa, was the younger brother of Putana and Bakasura. Therefore when he came and saw Krsna at the head of all the cowherd boys, he thought, "This Krsna has killed my sister and brother, Putana and Bakasura. Therefore, in order to please them both, I shall kill this Krsna, along with His assistants, the other cowherd boys."


                               TEXT 15




                     ete yada mat-suhrdos tilapah

                  krtas tada nasta-sama vrajaukasah

                   prane gate varsmasu ka nu cinta

                   prajasavah prana-bhrto hi ye te




   ete--this Krsna and His associates, the cowherd boys; yada--when; mat-suhrdoh--of my brother and sister; tila-apah krtah--become the last ritualistic ceremonial offering of sesame and water; tada--at that time; nasta-samah--without life; vraja-okasah--all the inhabitants of Vrajabhumi, Vrndavana; prane--when the vital force; gate--has been thrown out of the body; varsmasu--as far as the body is concerned; ka--what; nu--indeed; cinta--consideration; praja-asavah--those whose love for their children is the same as their love for their own life; prana-bhrtah--those living beings; hi--indeed; ye te--all the inhabitants of Vrajabhumi.




   Aghasura thought: If somehow or other I can make Krsna and His associates serve as the last offering of sesame and water for the departed souls of my brother and sister, then the inhabitants of Vrajabhumi, for whom these boys are the life and soul, will automatically die. If there is no life, there is no need for the body; consequently, when their sons are dead, naturally all the inhabitants of Vraja will die.


                               TEXT 16




                   iti vyavasyajagaram brhad vapuh

                    sa yojanayama-mahadri-pivaram

                 dhrtvadbhutam vyatta-guhananam tada

                   pathi vyaseta grasanasaya khalah




   iti--in this way; vyavasya--deciding; ajagaram--python; brhat vapuh--a very, very large body; sah--Aghasura; yojana-ayama--occupying eight miles of land; maha-adri-pivaram--as thick as a great mountain; dhrtva--assuming this form; adbhutam--wonderful; vyatta--spread; guha-ananam--having a mouth resembling a big cave in a mountain; tada--at that time; pathi--on the road; vyaseta--occupied; grasana-asaya--expecting to swallow all the cowherd boys; khalah--the most crooked.




   After thus deciding, that crooked Aghasura assumed the form of a huge python, as thick as a big mountain and as long as eight miles. Having assumed this wonderful python's body, he spread his mouth like a big cave in the mountains and lay down on the road, expecting to swallow Krsna and His associates the cowherd boys.


                               TEXT 17




                    dharadharostho jaladottarostho

                  dary-anananto giri-srnga-damstrah

                  dhvantantar-asyo vitatadhva-jihvah





   dhara--on the surface of the globe; adhara-osthah--whose lower lip; jalada-uttara-osthah--whose upper lip was touching the clouds; dari-anana-antah--whose mouth was expanded very widely like a mountain cave; giri-srnga--like a mountain peak; damstrah--whose teeth; dhvanta-antah-asyah--within whose mouth the atmosphere was as dark as possible; vitata-adhva-jihvah--whose tongue was like a broad way; parusa-anila-svasa--whose breath was like a warm wind; dava-iksana-usnah--and whose glance was like flames of fire.




   His lower lip rested on the surface of the earth, and his upper lip was touching the clouds in the sky. The borders of his mouth resembled the sides of a big cave in a mountain, and the middle of his mouth was as dark as possible. His tongue resembled a broad traffic-way, his breath was like a warm wind, and his eyes blazed like fire.


                               TEXT 18




                       drstva tam tadrsam sarve

                        matva vrndavana-sriyam


                      hy utpreksante sma lilaya




   drstva--seeing; tam--that Aghasura; tadrsam--in that posture; sarve--Krsna and all the cowherd boys; matva--thought it; vrndavana-sriyam--a beautiful statue of Vrndavana; vyatta--spread; ajagara-tundena--with the form of a python's mouth; hi--indeed; utpreksante--as if observing; sma--in the past; lilaya--as a matter of pastimes.




   Upon seeing this demon's wonderful form, which resembled a great python, the boys thought that it must be a beautiful scenic spot of Vrndavana. Thereafter, they imagined it to be similar to the mouth of a great python. In other words, the boys, unafraid, thought that it was a statue made in the shape of a great python for the enjoyment of their pastimes.




   Some of the boys, upon seeing this wonderful phenomenon, thought that it was in fact a python, and they were fleeing from the spot. But others said, "Why are you fleeing? It is not possible that a python like this is staying here. This is a spot of beauty for sporting." This is what they imagined.


                               TEXT 19




                          aho mitrani gadata

                      sattva-kutam purah sthitam


                        vyala-tundayate na va




   aho--oh; mitrani--friends; gadata--just let us know; sattva-kutam--dead python; purah sthitam--as it is just before us all; asmat--all of us; sangrasana--to devour us altogether; vyatta-vyala-tunda-yate--the python has spread its mouth; na va--whether it is a fact or not.




   The boys said: Dear friends, is this creature dead, or is it actually a living python with its mouth spread wide just to swallow us all? Kindly clear up this doubt.




   The friends began to discuss among themselves the reality of the wonderful creature laying before them. Was it dead, or was it actually a living python trying to swallow them up?


                               TEXT 20




                        satyam arka-kararaktam

                        uttara-hanuvad ghanam

                        adhara-hanuvad rodhas





   satyam--now the boys decided that it was in fact a living python; arka-kara-araktam--appearing like the sunshine; uttara-hanuvat ghanam--on the cloud resembling the upper lips; adhara-hanuvat--resembling the lower lips; rodhah--big bank; tat-praticchayaya--by the reflection of sunshine; arunam--reddish.




   Thereafter they decided: Dear friends, this is certainly an animal sitting here to swallow us all. Its upper lip resembles a cloud reddened by the sunshine, and its lower lip resembles the reddish shadows of a cloud.


                               TEXT 21




                      pratispardhete srkkabhyam

                         savyasavye nagodare

                       tunga-srngalayo 'py etas

                      tad-damstrabhis ca pasyata




   pratispardhete--just resembling; srkkabhyam--with the corners of the mouth; savya-asavye--left and right; naga-udare--caves of a mountain; tunga-srnga-alayah--the high mountain peaks; api--although it is so; etah tat-damstrabhih--they resemble the teeth of the animal; ca--and; pasyata--just see.




   On the left and right, the two depressions resembling mountain caves are the corners of its mouth, and the high mountain peaks are its teeth.


                               TEXT 22




                        astrtayama-margo 'yam

                         rasanam pratigarjati

                      esam antar-gatam dhvantam

                        etad apy antar-ananam




   astrta-ayama--the length and breadth; margah ayam--a broad way; rasanam--the tongue; pratigarjati--resembles; esam antah-gatam--on the inside of the mountains; dhvantam--darkness; etat--this; api--indeed; antah-ananam--the inside of the mouth.




   In length and breadth the animal's tongue resembles a broad traffic-way, and the inside of its mouth is very, very dark, like a cave in a mountain.


                               TEXT 23




                       davosna-khara-vato 'yam

                        svasavad bhati pasyata


                      'py antar-amisa-gandhavat




   dava-usna-khara-vatah ayam--hot breath coming out exactly like fire; svasa-vat bhati pasyata--just see how it resembles his breath; tat-dagdha-sattva--of burning corpses; durgandhah--the bad smell; api--indeed; antah-amisa-gandha-vat--is like the fleshy smell coming out from within.




   The hot fiery wind is the breath coming out of his mouth, which is giving off the bad smell of burning flesh because of all the dead bodies he has eaten.


                               TEXT 24




                   asman kim atra grasita nivistan

                  ayam tatha ced bakavad vinanksyati

                  ksanad aneneti bakary-usan-mukham

                 viksyoddhasantah kara-tadanair yayuh




   asman--all of us; kim--whether; atra--here; grasita--will swallow; nivistan--who have attempted to enter; ayam--this animal; tatha--so; cet--if; baka-vat--like Bakasura; vinanksyati--he will be vanquished; ksanat--immediately; anena--by this Krsna; iti--in this way; baka-ari-usat-mukham--the beautiful face of Krsna, the enemy of Bakasura; viksya--observing, looking at; uddhasantah--loudly laughing; kara-tadanaih--with clapping of hands; yayuh--entered the mouth.




   Then the boys said, "Has this living creature come to swallow us? If he does so, he will immediately be killed like Bakasura, without delay." Thus they looked at the beautiful face of Krsna, the enemy of Bakasura, and, laughing loudly and clapping their hands, they entered the mouth of the python.




   After talking about the terrible animal this way and that way, they decided to enter the demon's mouth. They had full faith in Krsna because they had experienced how Krsna had saved them from the mouth of Bakasura. Now, here was another asura, Aghasura. Therefore, they wanted to enjoy the sport of entering the demon's mouth and being saved by Krsna, the enemy of Bakasura.


                               TEXT 25




               ittham mitho 'tathyam ataj-jna-bhasitam

                   srutva vicintyety amrsa mrsayate

                 rakso viditvakhila-bhuta-hrt-sthitah

                 svanam niroddhum bhagavan mano dadhe




   ittham--in this way; mithah--or another; atathyam--a subject matter that is not a fact; a-tat-jna--without knowledge; bhasitam--while they were talking; srutva--Krsna hearing them; vicintya--thinking; iti--thus; amrsa--actually, truly; mrsayate--who is trying to appear as a false thing (actually the animal was Aghasura, but because of poor knowledge they were thinking him to be a dead python); raksah--(Krsna, however, could understand that) he was a demon; viditva--knowing it; akhila-bhuta-hrt-sthitah--because He is antaryami, situated everywhere, in the core of everyone's heart; svanam--of His own associates; niroddhum--just to forbid them; bhagavan--the Supreme Personality of Godhead; manah dadhe--made up His mind.




   The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Sri Krsna, who is situated as antaryami, the Supersoul, in the core of everyone's heart, heard the boys talking among themselves about the artificial python. Unknown to them, it was actually Aghasura, a demon who had appeared as a python. Krsna, knowing this, wanted to forbid His associates to enter the demon's mouth.


                               TEXT 26




                  tavat pravistas tv asurodarantaram

                  param na girnah sisavah sa-vatsah

                    pratiksamanena bakari-vesanam

                   hata-sva-kanta-smaranena raksasa




   tavat--in the meantime; pravistah--all entered; tu--indeed; asura-udara-antaram--within the belly of the great demon; param--but; na girnah--they were not swallowed; sisavah--all the boys; sa-vatsah--along with their calves; pratiksamanena--who was just waiting for; baka-ari--of the enemy of Bakasura; vesanam--the entering; hata-sva-kanta-smaranena--the asura was thinking of his own dead relatives, who would not be satisfied unless Krsna were dead; raksasa--by the demon.




   In the meantime, while Krsna was considering how to stop them, all the cowherd boys entered the mouth of the demon. The demon, however, did not swallow them, for he was thinking of his own relatives who had been killed by Krsna and was just waiting for Krsna to enter his mouth.


                               TEXT 27




                 tan viksya krsnah sakalabhaya-prado

                 hy ananya-nathan sva-karad avacyutan

                  dinams ca mrtyor jatharagni-ghasan

                   ghrnardito dista-krtena vismitah




   tan--all those boys; viksya--seeing; krsnah--the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna; sakala-abhaya-pradah--who is the source of fearlessness for everyone; hi--indeed; ananya-nathan--especially for the cowherd boys, who did not know anyone except Krsna; sva-karat--from the control of His hand; avacyutan--now gone out; dinan ca--helpless; mrtyoh jathara-agni-ghasan--who had all entered like straws into the fire of the abdomen of Aghasura, who was very bold and hungry, like death personified (because the asura had assumed a big body, he must have had a very strong appetite); ghrna-arditah--therefore, being compassionate due to causeless mercy; dista-krtena--by things arranged by His internal potency; vismitah--He also, for the time being, was astonished.




   Krsna saw that all the cowherd boys, who did not know anyone but Him as their Lord, had now gone out of His hand and were helpless, having entered like straws into the fire of the abdomen of Aghasura, who was death personified. It was intolerable for Krsna to be separated from His friends the cowherd boys. Therefore, as if seeing that this had been arranged by His internal potency, Krsna was momentarily struck with wonder and unsure of what to do.


                               TEXT 28




                 krtyam kim atrasya khalasya jivanam

                   na va amisam ca satam vihimsanam

                  dvayam katham syad iti samvicintya

                 jnatvavisat tundam asesa-drg gharih




   krtyam kim--what to do; atra--in this situation; asya khalasya--of this envious demon; jivanam--the existence of life; na--there should not be; va--either; amisam ca--and of those who are innocent; satam--of the devotees; vihimsanam--the death; dvayam--both actions (killing the demon and saving the boys); katham--how; syat--can be possible; iti samvicintya--very perfectly thinking about the subject matter; jnatva--and deciding what to do; avisat--entered; tundam--within the mouth of the demon; asesa-drk harih--Krsna, who has unlimited potency, could understand past, future and present.




   Now, what was to be done? How could both the killing of this demon and the saving of the devotees be performed simultaneously? Krsna, being unlimitedly potent, decided to wait for an intelligent means by which He could simultaneously save the boys and kill the demon. Then He entered the mouth of Aghasura.




   Krsna is known as ananta-virya-sarvajna because everything is known to Him. Because He knows everything perfectly well, it was not difficult for Him to find a means by which He could save the boys and at the same time kill the demon. Thus He also decided to enter the demon's mouth.


                               TEXT 29




                        tada ghana-cchada deva

                       bhayad dha-heti cukrusuh

                       jahrsur ye ca kamsadyah

                      kaunapas tv agha-bandhavah




   tada--at that time; ghana-chadah--behind the clouds; devah--all the demigods; bhayat--on account of feeling danger because Krsna had entered the mouth of the demon; ha-ha--alas, alas; iti--in this way; cukrusuh--they exclaimed; jahrsuh--became jubilant; ye--those; ca--also; kamsa-adyah--Kamsa and others; kaunapah--the demons; tu--indeed; agha-bandhavah--the friends of Aghasura.




   When Krsna entered the mouth of Aghasura, the demigods hidden behind the clouds exclaimed, "Alas! Alas!" But the friends of Aghasura, like Kamsa and other demons, were jubilant.


                               TEXT 30




                     tac chrutva bhagavan krsnas

                      tv avyayah sarbha-vatsakam

                        curni-cikirsor atmanam

                         tarasa vavrdhe gale




   tat--that exclamation of ha-ha; srutva--hearing; bhagavan--the Supreme Personality of Godhead; krsnah--Lord Krsna; tu--indeed; avyayah--never vanquishable; sa-arbha-vatsakam--along with the cowherd boys and the calves; curni-cikirsoh--of that demon, who desired to smash within the abdomen; atmanam--personally, Himself; tarasa--very soon; vavrdhe--enlarged; gale--within the throat.




   When the invincible Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, heard the demigods crying "Alas! Alas!" from behind the clouds, He immediately enlarged Himself within the demon's throat, just to save Himself and the cowherd boys, His own associates, from the demon who wished to smash them.




   Such are the acts of Krsna. paritranaya sadhunam vinasaya ca duskrtam (Bg. 4.8). By enlarging Himself within the throat of the demon, Krsna suffocated and killed him and at the same time saved Himself and His associates from imminent death and also saved the demigods from lamentation.


                               TEXT 31




                   tato 'tikayasya niruddha-margino

              hy udgirna-drster bhramatas tv itas tatah

                   purno 'ntar-ange pavano niruddho

                 murdhan vinirbhidya vinirgato bahih




   tatah--after Krsna took action to kill the demon's body from within the mouth; ati-kayasya--of that great demon, who had expanded his body to a very large size; niruddha-marginah--because of suffocating, all outlets being stopped up; hi udgirna-drsteh--whose eyes had popped out; bhramatah tu itah tatah--the eyeballs, or the life air, moving here and there; purnah--completely filled; antah-ange--within the body; pavanah--the life air; niruddhah--being stopped; murdhan--the hole in the top of the head; vinirbhidya--breaking; vinirgatah--went out; bahih--externally.




   Then, because Krsna had increased the size of His body, the demon extended his own body to a very large size. Nonetheless, his breathing stopped, he suffocated, and his eyes rolled here and there and popped out. The demon's life air, however, could not pass through any outlet, and therefore it finally burst out through a hole in the top of the demon's head.


                               TEXT 32




                     tenaiva sarvesu bahir gatesu

                    pranesu vatsan suhrdah paretan

                drstya svayotthapya tad-anvitah punar

                 vaktran mukundo bhagavan viniryayau




   tena eva--through that brahma-randhra, or the hole in the top of the head; sarvesu--all the air within the body; bahih gatesu--having gone out; pranesu--the life airs, along with the vital force; vatsan--the calves; suhrdah--the cowherd boy friends; paretan--who were all dead within; drstya svaya--by Krsna's glancing over; utthapya--brought them back to life; tat-anvitah--thus accompanied by them; punah--again; vaktrat--from the mouth; mukundah--the Supreme Personality of Godhead; bhagavan--Krsna; viniryayau--came out.




   When all the demon's life air had passed away through that hole in the top of his head, Krsna glanced over the dead calves and cowherd boys and brought them back to life. Then Mukunda, who can give one liberation, came out from the demon's mouth with His friends and the calves.


                               TEXT 33




                  pinahi-bhogotthitam adbhutam mahaj

                 jyotih sva-dhamna jvalayad diso dasa

                pratiksya khe 'vasthitam isa-nirgamam

                   vivesa tasmin misatam divaukasam




   pina--very great; ahi-bhoga-utthitam--issuing from the serpent's body, which was meant for material enjoyment; adbhutam--very wonderful; mahat--great; jyotih--effulgence; sva-dhamna--by his own illumination; jvalayat--making glaring; disah dasa--all the ten directions; pratiksya--waiting; khe--in the sky; avasthitam--individually staying; isa-nirgamam--until the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, came out; vivesa--entered; tasmin--in the body of Krsna; misatam--while observing; divaukasam--all the demigods.




   From the body of the gigantic python, a glaring effulgence came out, illuminating all directions, and stayed individually in the sky until Krsna came out from the corpse's mouth. Then, as all the demigods looked on, this effulgence entered into Krsna's body.




   Apparently the serpent named Aghasura, because of having received association with Krsna, attained mukti by entering Krsna's body. Entering the body of Krsna is called sayujya-mukti, but later verses prove that Aghasura, like Dantavakra and others, received sarupya-mukti. This has been broadly described by Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura with references from the Vaisnava-tosani of Srila Jiva Gosvami. Aghasura attained sarupya-mukti, being promoted to the Vaikuntha planets to live with the same four-armed bodily features as Visnu. The explanation of how this is so may be summarized as follows.

   The effulgence came out from the python's body and became purified, attaining spiritual suddha-sattva, freedom from material contamination, because Krsna had stayed within the serpent's body, even after the serpent's death. One may doubt that such a demon, full of mischievous activities, could attain the liberation of sarupya or sayujya, and one may be astonished about this. But Krsna is so kind that in order to drive away such doubts, He had the effulgence, the individual life of the python, wait for some time in its individuality, in the presence of all the demigods.

   Krsna is the full effulgence, and every living being is part and parcel of that effulgence. As proved here, the effulgence in every living being is individual. For some time, the effulgence remained outside the demon's body, individually, and did not mix with the whole effulgence, the brahmajyoti. The Brahman effulgence is not visible to material eyes, but to prove that every living being is individual, Krsna had this individual effulgence stay outside the demon's body for some time, for everyone to see. Then Krsna proved that anyone killed by Him attains liberation, whether sayujya, sarupya, samipya or whatever.

   But the liberation of those who are on the transcendental platform of love and affection is vimukti, special liberation. Thus the serpent first entered the body of Krsna personally and mixed with the Brahman effulgence. This merging is called sayujya-mukti. But from later verses we find that Aghasura attained sarupya-mukti. Text 38 explains that Aghasura attained a body exactly like that of Visnu, and the verse after that also clearly states that he attained a completely spiritual body like that of Narayana. Therefore in two or three places the Bhagavatam has confirmed that Aghasura attained sarupya-mukti. One may then argue, How is it that he mixed with the Brahman effulgence? The answer is that as Jaya and Vijaya, after three births, again attained sarupya-mukti and association with the Lord, Aghasura received a similar liberation.


                               TEXT 34




                 tato 'tihrstah sva-krto 'krtarhanam

                 puspaih suga apsarasas ca nartanaih

                gitaih sura vadya-dharas ca vadyakaih

                stavais ca vipra jaya-nihsvanair ganah




   tatah--thereafter; ati-hrstah--everyone becoming very much pleased; sva-krtah--own respective duty; akrta--executed; arhanam--in the shape of worshiping the Supreme Personality of Godhead; puspaih--by showering flowers grown in Nandana-kanana from the heavens; su-gah--the celestial singers; apsarasah ca--and the celestial dancing girls; nartanaih--by dancing; gitaih--by singing celestial songs; surah--all the demigods; vadya-dharah ca--those who played on musical drums; vadyakaih--by playing respectively; stavaih ca--and by offering prayers; viprah--the brahmanas; jaya-nihsvanaih--simply by glorifying the Supreme Personality of Godhead; ganah--everyone.




   Thereafter, everyone being pleased, the demigods began to shower flowers from Nandana-kanana, the celestial dancing girls began to dance, and the Gandharvas, who are famous for singing, offered songs of prayer. The drummers began to beat their kettledrums, and the brahmanas offered Vedic hymns. In this way, both in the heavens and on earth, everyone began to perform his own duties, glorifying the Lord.




   Everyone has some particular duty. The sastra has concluded (nirupitah) that everyone should glorify the Supreme Personality of Godhead by his own qualifications. If you are a singer, always glorify the Supreme Lord by singing very nicely. If you are a musician, glorify the Supreme Lord by playing musical instruments. Svanusthitasya dharmasya samsiddhir hari-tosanam (Bhag. 1.2.13). The perfection of life is to satisfy the Personality of Godhead. Therefore, beginning from this earth up to the celestial kingdom, everyone engaged in glorifying the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The decision of all great saintly persons is that whatever qualifications one has acquired should be utilized to glorify the Supreme Lord.


                  idam hi pumsas tapasah srutasya va

                svistasya suktasya ca buddhi-dattayoh

                  avicyuto 'rthah kavibhir nirupito

                    yad uttamasloka-gunanuvarnanam


   "Learned sages have definitely concluded that the infallible purpose of the advancement of knowledge, austerity, Vedic study, sacrifice, the chanting of hymns, and charity is found in the transcendental descriptions of the qualities of the Lord, who is defined in choice poetry." (Bhag. 1.5.22) This is the perfection of life. One should be trained how to glorify the Supreme Personality of Godhead by one's respective qualities. Education, austerity, penance or, in the modern world, business, industry, education and so on--all should be engaged in glorifying the Lord. Then everyone in the world will be happy.

   Krsna comes, therefore, to exhibit His transcendental activities so that people may have the chance to glorify Him in every respect. To understand how to glorify the Lord is actual research work. It is not that everything should be understood without God. That is condemned.



                      jatih sastram japas tapah

                         apranasyaiva dehasya

                        mandanam loka-ranjanam


   (Hari-bhakti-sudhodaya 3.11)


   Without bhagavad-bhakti, without glorification of the Supreme Lord, whatever we have is simply a decoration of the dead body.


                               TEXT 35






               srutva sva-dhamno 'nty aja agato 'cirad

                   drstva mahisasya jagama vismayam




   tat--that celebration performed by the demigods in the upper planetary system; adbhuta--wonderful; stotra--prayers; su-vadya--glorious musical sounds of drums and other instruments; gitika--celestial songs; jaya-adi--sounds of jaya, etc.; na-eka-utsava--celebrations simply for glorifying the Supreme Personality of Godhead; mangala-svanan--transcendental sounds auspicious for everyone; srutva--hearing such sounds; sva-dhamnah--from his abode; anti--nearby; ajah--Lord Brahma; agatah--coming there; acirat--very soon; drstva--seeing; mahi--the glorification; isasya--of Lord Krsna; jagama vismayam--became astonished.




   When Lord Brahma heard the wonderful ceremony going on near his planet, accompanied by music and songs and sounds of "Jaya! Jaya!" he immediately came down to see the function. Upon seeing so much glorification of Lord Krsna, he was completely astonished.




   Here the word anti means "near," indicating that even in the higher planetary systems near Brahmaloka, like Maharloka, Janaloka and Tapoloka, the festival of glorification of Lord Krsna was going on.


                               TEXT 36




                        rajann ajagaram carma

                      suskam vrndavane 'dbhutam

                       vrajaukasam bahu-titham





   rajan--O Maharaja Pariksit; ajagaram carma--the dry body of Aghasura, which remained only a big skin; suskam--when it completely dried up; vrndavane adbhutam--like a wonderful museum piece in Vrndavana; vraja-okasam--for the inhabitants of Vrajabhumi, Vrndavana; bahu-titham--for many days, or for a long time; babhuva--became; akrida--sporting place; gahvaram--a cave.




   O King Pariksit, when the python-shaped body of Aghasura dried up into merely a big skin, it became a wonderful place for the inhabitants of Vrndavana to visit, and it remained so for a long, long time.


                               TEXT 37




                        etat kaumarajam karma

                        harer atmahi-moksanam

                        mrtyoh paugandake bala

                       drstvocur vismita vraje




   etat--this incident of delivering both Aghasura and Krsna's associates from death; kaumara-jam karma--performed during their kaumara age (the age of five years); hareh--of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; atma--the devotees are the Lord's heart and soul; ahi-moksanam--their deliverance and the deliverance of the python; mrtyoh--from the path of repeated birth and death; paugandake--at the age of pauganda, beginning with the sixth year (one year later); balah--all the boys; drstva ucuh--disclosed the fact after one year; vismitah--as if it had happened on that very day; vraje--in Vrndavana.




   This incident of Krsna's saving Himself and His associates from death and of giving deliverance to Aghasura, who had assumed the form of a python, took place when Krsna was five years old. It was disclosed in Vrajabhumi after one year, as if it had taken place on that very day.




   The word moksanam means "liberation." For the associates of Krsna and for Krsna Himself, there is no question about liberation; they are already liberated, being in the spiritual world. In the material world there are birth, death, old age and disease, but in the spiritual world there are no such things because everything is eternal. As for the python, however, by the association of Krsna and His devotees, Aghasura also achieved the same facility of eternal life. Therefore, as indicated here by the word atmahi-moksanam, if the python Aghasura could receive eternal association with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, what is to be said of those who are already associates of the Lord? Sakam vijahruh krta-punya-punjah (Bhag. 10.12.11). Here is proof that God is good for everyone. Even when He kills someone, the one who is killed attains liberation. What then is to be said of those who are already in the association of the Lord?


                               TEXT 38




                  naitad vicitram manujarbha-mayinah

                    paravaranam paramasya vedhasah

                 agho 'pi yat-sparsana-dhauta-patakah

                prapatma-samyam tv asatam sudurlabham




   na--not; etat--this; vicitram--is wonderful; manuja-arbha-mayinah--of Krsna, who appeared as the son of Nanda Maharaja and Yasoda, being compassionate upon them; para-avaranam--of all causes and effects; paramasya vedhasah--of the supreme creator; aghah api--Aghasura also; yat-sparsana--simply by the slight association of whom; dhauta-patakah--became freed from all contamination of material existence; prapa--became elevated; atma-samyam--to a body exactly resembling that of Narayana; tu--but; asatam sudurlabham--which is not at all possible to be obtained by contaminated souls (but everything can be possible by the mercy of the Supreme Lord).




   Krsna is the cause of all causes. The causes and effects of the material world, both higher and lower, are all created by the Supreme Lord, the original controller. When Krsna appeared as the son of Nanda Maharaja and Yasoda, He did so by His causeless mercy. Consequently, for Him to exhibit His unlimited opulence was not at all wonderful. Indeed, He showed such great mercy that even Aghasura, the most sinful miscreant, was elevated to being one of His associates and achieving sarupya-mukti, which is actually impossible for materially contaminated persons to attain.




   The word maya is also used in connection with love. Out of maya, love, a father has affection for his child. Therefore the word mayinah indicates that Krsna, out of love, appeared as the son of Nanda Maharaja and assumed the form of a human child (manujarbha). Krsna is the cause of all causes. He is the creator of cause and effect, and He is the supreme controller. Nothing is impossible for Him. Therefore, that He enabled even a living being like Aghasura to attain the salvation of sarupya-mukti was not at all wonderful for Krsna. Krsna took pleasure in entering the mouth of Aghasura in a sporting spirit along with His associates. Therefore, when Aghasura, by that sporting association, as maintained in the spiritual world, was purified of all contamination, he attained sarupya-mukti and vimukti by the grace of Krsna. For Krsna this was not at all wonderful.


                               TEXT 39




                   sakrd yad-anga-pratimantar-ahita

                   manomayi bhagavatim dadau gatim

                  sa eva nityatma-sukhanubhuty-abhi-

                vyudasta-mayo 'ntar-gato hi kim punah




   sakrt--once only; yat--whose; anga-pratima--the form of the Supreme Lord (there are many forms, but Krsna is the original form); antah-ahita--placing within the core of the heart, somehow or other; manah-mayi--thinking of Him even by force; bhagavatim--which is competent to offer devotional service to the Lord; dadau--Krsna gave; gatim--the best destination; sah--He (the Supreme Personality of Godhead); eva--indeed; nitya--always; atma--of all living entities; sukha-anubhuti--anyone thinking of Him immediately enjoys transcendental pleasure; abhivyudasta-mayah--because all illusion is completely removed by Him; antah-gatah--He is always present within the core of the heart; hi--indeed; kim punah--what to speak.




   If even only once or even by force one brings the form of the Supreme Personality of Godhead into one's mind, one can attain the supreme salvation by the mercy of Krsna, as did Aghasura. What then is to be said of those whose hearts the Supreme Personality of Godhead enters when He appears as an incarnation, or those who always think of the lotus feet of the Lord, who is the source of transcendental bliss for all living entities and by whom all illusion is completely removed?




   The process for receiving the favor of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is described here. Yat-pada-pankaja-palasa-vilasa-bhaktya (Bhag. 4.22.39). Simply by thinking of Krsna, one can attain Him very easily. Krsna is also described as having His lotus feet always within the hearts of His devotees (bhagavan bhakta-hrdi sthitah). In the case of Aghasura, one may argue that he was not a devotee. The answer to this is that he thought of Krsna for a moment with devotion. Bhaktyaham ekaya grahyah. Without devotion, one cannot think of Krsna; and, conversely, whenever one thinks of Krsna, one undoubtedly has devotion. Although Aghasura's purpose was to kill Krsna, for a moment Aghasura thought of Krsna with devotion, and Krsna and His associates wanted to sport within Aghasura's mouth. Similarly, Putana wanted to kill Krsna by poisoning Him, but Krsna took her as His mother because He had accepted the milk of her breast. Svalpam apy asya dharmasya trayate mahato bhayat (Bg. 2.40). Especially when Krsna appears as an avatara, anyone who thinks of Krsna in His different incarnations (ramadi-murtisu kala-niyamena tisthan), and especially in His original form as Krsna, attains salvation. There are many instances of this, and among them is Aghasura, who attained the salvation of sarupya-mukti. Therefore the process is satatam kirtayanto mam yatantas ca drdha-vratah (Bg. 9.14). Those who are devotees always engage in glorifying Krsna. Advaitam acyutam anadim ananta-rupam: when we speak of Krsna, we refer to all His avataras, such as Krsna, Govinda, Narayana, Visnu, Lord Caitanya, Krsna-Balarama and Syamasundara. One who always thinks of Krsna must attain vimukti, special salvation as the Lord's personal associate, not necessarily in Vrndavana, but at least in Vaikuntha. This is called sarupya-mukti.


                               TEXT 40




                            sri-suta uvaca

                    ittham dvija yadavadeva-dattah

                  srutva sva-ratus caritam vicitram

                  papraccha bhuyo 'pi tad eva punyam

                    vaiyasakim yan nigrhita-cetah




   sri-sutah uvaca--Sri Suta Gosvami spoke to the assembled saints at Naimisaranya; ittham--in this way; dvijah--O learned brahmanas; yadava-deva-dattah--Maharaja Pariksit (or Maharaja Yudhisthira), who was protected by Yadavadeva, Krsna; srutva--hearing; sva-ratuh--of Krsna, who was his savior within the womb of his mother, Uttara; caritam--the activities; vicitram--all wonderful; papraccha--inquired; bhuyah api--even again; tat eva--such activities; punyam--which are always full of pious activities (srnvatam sva-kathah krsnah punya-sravana-kirtanah: to hear about Krsna is always pious); vaiyasakim--unto Sukadeva Gosvami; yat--because; nigrhita-cetah--Pariksit Maharaja had already become steady in hearing about Krsna.




   Sri Suta Gosvami said: O learned saints, the childhood pastimes of Sri Krsna are very wonderful. Maharaja Pariksit, after hearing about those pastimes of Krsna, who had saved him in the womb of his mother, became steady in his mind and again inquired from Sukadeva Gosvami to hear about those pious activities.


                               TEXT 41





                       brahman kalantara-krtam

                      tat-kalinam katham bhavet

                        yat kaumare hari-krtam

                      jaguh paugandake 'rbhakah




   sri-raja uvaca--Maharaja Pariksit inquired; brahman--O learned brahmana (Sukadeva Gosvami); kala-antara-krtam--things done in the past, at a different time (in the kaumara age); tat-kalinam--described as happening now (in the pauganda age); katham bhavet--how could it be so; yat--which pastime; kaumare--in the kaumara age; hari-krtam--was done by Krsna; jaguh--they described; paugandake--in the pauganda age (after one year); arbhakah--all the boys.




   Maharaja Pariksit inquired: O great sage, how could things done in the past have been described as being done at the present? Lord Sri Krsna performed this pastime of killing Aghasura during His kaumara age. How then, during His pauganda age, could the boys have described this incident as having happened recently?


                               TEXT 42




                       tad bruhi me maha-yogin

                        param kautuhalam guro

                        nunam etad dharer eva

                        maya bhavati nanyatha




   tat bruhi--therefore please explain that; me--unto me; maha-yogin--O great yogi; param--very much; kautuhalam--curiosity; guro--O my lord, my spiritual master; nunam--otherwise; etat--this incident; hareh--of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; eva--indeed; maya--the illusion; bhavati--becomes; na anyatha--nothing more.




   O greatest yogi, my spiritual master, kindly describe why this happened. I am very much curious to know about it. I think that it was nothing but another illusion due to Krsna.




   Krsna has many potencies: parasya saktir vividhaiva sruyate (Svetasvatara Upanisad 6.8). The description of Aghasura was disclosed after one year. Some act of Krsna's potency must have been involved. Therefore Maharaja Pariksit was very curious to know about this, and he requested Sukadeva Gosvami to explain it.


                               TEXT 43




                        vayam dhanyatama loke

                      guro 'pi ksatra-bandhavah

                      vayam pibamo muhus tvattah

                       punyam krsna-kathamrtam




   vayam--we are; dhanya-tamah--most glorified; loke--in this world; guro--O my lord, my spiritual master; api--although; ksatra-bandhavah--the lowest of the ksatriyas (because we did not act like ksatriyas); vayam--we are; pibamah--drinking; muhuh--always; tvattah--from you; punyam--pious; krsna-katha-amrtam--the nectar of krsna-katha.




   O my lord, my spiritual master, although we are the lowest of ksatriyas, we are glorified and benefited because we have the opportunity of always hearing from you the nectar of the pious activities of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.




   The pious activities of the Supreme Personality of Godhead are very confidential. It is not ordinarily possible to hear such activities unless one is very, very fortunate. Pariksit Maharaja placed himself as ksatra-bandhavah, which means "the lowest of the ksatriyas." The qualities of the ksatriya are described in Bhagavad-gita, and although the general quality of the ksatriya is isvara-bhava, the tendency to rule, a ksatriya is not supposed to rule over a brahmana. Thus Maharaja Pariksit regretted that he had wanted to rule over the brahmanas and had therefore been cursed. He considered himself the lowest of the ksatriyas. Danam isvara-bhavas ca ksatram karma svabhavajam (Bg. 18.43). There was no doubt that Maharaja Pariksit had the good qualities of a ksatriya, but as a devotee he presented himself, with submissiveness and humility, as the lowest of the ksatriyas, remembering his act of wrapping a dead serpent around the neck of a brahmana. A student and disciple has the right to ask the guru about any confidential service, and it is the duty of the guru to explain these confidential matters to his disciple.


                               TEXT 44




                            sri-suta uvaca

                 ittham sma prstah sa tu badarayanis


               krcchrat punar labdha-bahir-drsih sanaih

                   pratyaha tam bhagavatottamottama




   sri-sutah uvaca--Sri Suta Gosvami said; ittham--in this way; sma--in the past; prstah--being inquired from; sah--he; tu--indeed; badarayanih--Sukadeva Gosvami; tat--by him (Sukadeva Gosvami); smarita-ananta--as soon as Lord Krsna was remembered; hrta--lost in ecstasy; akhila-indriyah--all actions of the external senses; krcchrat--with great difficulty; punah--again; labdha-bahih-drsih--having revived his external sensory perception; sanaih--slowly; pratyaha--replied; tam--unto Maharaja Pariksit; bhagavata-uttama-uttama--O great saintly person, greatest of all devotees (Saunaka).




   Suta Gosvami said: O Saunaka, greatest of saints and devotees, when Maharaja Pariksit inquired from Sukadeva Gosvami in this way, Sukadeva Gosvami, immediately remembering subject matters about Krsna within the core of his heart, externally lost contact with the actions of his senses. Thereafter, with great difficulty, he revived his external sensory perception and began to speak to Maharaja Pariksit about krsna-katha.


Thus end the Bhaktivedanta purports of the Tenth Canto, Twelfth Chapter, of the Srimad-Bhagavatam, entitled, "The Killing of the Demon Aghasura."

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