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  • Writer's pictureanjali mohapatra

Kalayavana chased Lord Krishna!

Updated: Jul 3

King Janamejaya said, 'O reverend Rishi! Why did Janardana leave Mathura, the abode of all prosperity? Who was Kalayavana?'

Rishi Vaishampayana said, 'O Dscendant of Bharata race! Listen to me that I shall describe what you asked. Thus, sage Vaishampayana began------

There was a Brahmin named Gargya. He was the preceptor of the Andhakas and Vrishni races. Once he was humiliated by the Yadavas. Out of anger, he decided to take revenge on Yadavas. He went to the forest and began his severe penances worshiping Lord Mahadev. During his penances, he ate nothing except iron dust as his food. After twelve years of worship, Lord Shiva was pleased and blessed him with a son. In due course of time, that son of Gargya was adopted by the mighty king of Yavanas who was childless. Thus, the name of that child was given as Kalayavana! 

In due course, Kalayavana became the king of Yavanas. He was extremely powerful and every time searching for a worthy mighty person with whom he could have combat. He was informed by Rishi Narada that Yadavas were unbeatable warriors. Being disires, Kalayavana started attacking Yadus. Jarasandha, the king of Magadha, had already attacked Mathura for the seventeenth time and was always defeated by the Yadus. As Lord Krishna killed Kansa, his son-in-law, Jarasandha was determined to kill Krishna and Balaram with all the Yadavas.

Lord Krishna was worried about both of them. He began to consider the double danger that going to occur in the Yadu dynasty by two formidable enemies! He realized how much the Yadu dynasty was in distress because of these two powerful enemies' frequent attacks! By that time, Kalayavana had already surrounded Mathura from all sides with his vast number of soldiers. Krishna began to think, 'Beholding the opportunity of Balaram and myself engaged with Kalayavana, Jarasandha being powerful may kill the members of the Yadu family or take them to his kingdom as captives.' Thus, he kept his relatives in a formidable fort amid the sea- Dwaraka made by the celestial architect Vishwakarma himself! All the citizens of Mathura were brought to Dwaraka. 

After shifting the Yadus, Krishna appeared before Kalayavana. Beholding the beauty of Lord Krishna, Kalayavana was spellbound for a moment! He never saw him before and the way Rishi Narada described him, it was true! Krishna knew that Kalayavana’s death was not destined for him. So, he played the trick by which Kalayavana would be killed by King Muchukunda who was sleeping in a cave! Thus, Lord Krishna pretended to run away and Kalayavana followed him. He assumed that Krishna was trying to escape. He was too eager to have a combat with him. In order to get hold of Krishna, the Yavana king chased him but could not catch him. Looking at his cowardly behavior, Kalayavana shouted, ‘O Krishna! I heard that you are a hero of the Yadava dynasty! Why then are you trying to escape like a coward?’

Lord Krishna smiled and said nothing. Kalayavana ran after him, who turned his back and ran away. `Before Kalayavana could reach him, he just entered a mountain cave and disappeared. Kalayavana also entered the cave and there he saw a man sleeping on the ground. He thought, 'After leading me such a distance, he is lying here like a saint.' He couldn't make out that the person who was sleeping was not Krishna but King Muchukunda! Assuming him as  Krishna, he kicked him hard. He was in a deep slumber! He was highly enraged as his sleep was broken by the Yavana king. When the king woke up after a long sleep, the anger in him came out as fire through his eyes and Kalayavana was burnt up into ashes.

King Muchukunda was a great devotee of Lord Vishnu. He was a great warrior and always true to his words. Long ago, King Muchukunda had joined in a battle for Devas against Asuras. He fought relentlessly and killed many Asuras. After fighting for a long time, Muchukunda was tired. During the battle, he couldn't sleep at all. Thus, he wished to sleep for a long time! As Lord Indra was very much pleased with his help and offered him a boon, he said, 'O Lord! I need a long rest without any disturbance. Anyone would wake up me from my sleep would be burnt into ashes by my sight.' Indra along with the other demi-gods said, So it be.'

Worn out with fatigue, the illustrious king Muchukunda first came to the king of mountains. Then entering into a cave, he rested there in a deep slumber which was eventually broken by Kalayavana!

At last, after Klayavana's death, King Muchukunda who was fully awake was blessed with Lord Krishna and appeared before him in his divine form Lord Vishnu!

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