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Nilanjana recounts a tale from the Bhagavata that no one is spared in this life. Even Krishna was called a Jewel Thief. A Different Truths exclusive.
Sukha’s face broke into a wan smile, “When the cosmic consciousness assumes the form of a human being, then all the hiccups that are natural to human life has to be encountered by them as well.”
Parikshit asked, “Do they have to go through sorrow and humiliation as well?”
“Yes, of course,” Sukha said, “Even Krishna was called a jewel thief.”
“Really?” Parikshit was curious now.
“Yes,” Sukha began another story, “Satrajit worshipped Surya (the Sun). Surya, happy with his devotion, gave the Syamantaka jewel to him. Now, this jewel brought immense fortune to the holder. Hence, Satrajit’s fortune began to grow in leaps and bounds. Unfortunately, his arrogance also shot up.
When Krishna met him, he asked Satrajit to gift the jewel to King Ugrasena. That way the entire country would be reaping the benefits.
When Krishna met him, he asked Satrajit to gift the jewel to King Ugrasena. That way the entire country would be reaping the benefits. Satrajit disregarded this advice and carried on accumulating all the wealth that the jewel bestowed on him.
Some days later Prasenajit, Satrajit’s brother went out for hunting wearing the same jewel. When his brother did not return way after sunset, Satrajit went out looking for him. Eventually, he stumbled upon the corpse of his brother. And the jewel was missing. He accused Krishna of killing his brother and taking away the Syamantaka jewel.
He went to the spot where Prasenajit was found dead. He found the tracks of a lion leading away from the spot. The tracks had blood on them.
Initially, Krishna took it as a joke, but then he decided to do something about it. He went to the spot where Prasenajit was found dead. He found the tracks of a lion leading away from the spot. The tracks had blood on them. On following the tracks, Krishna and his companions found a dead lion. Syamantaka was not to be found yet. Signs of struggle showed that a bear must have killed the lion.
Krishna followed the tracks of the bear and found himself at the mouth of a big cave. He asked his entourage to stay behind and entered the cave himself. A child was playing with the jewel. When Krishna approached the child, the mother bear let out a frightened cry. Krishna found himself facing Jambavan, the huge bear, who was Shri Rama’s companion during his fight with Ravana in Lanka.
Jambavan challenged Krishna and they began fighting. It is believed that the fight went on for twenty-eight days and nights.
Angry at this audacity, Jambavan attacked him again. Krishna over-powered him, and he fainted. When he gained consciousness, he saw Shri Rama standing in front of him.
Finally, Jambavan confessed that the only other person who was so mighty was Shri Rama. Krishna decided to tease him, so he said a few not-so-complimentary things about Shri Rama. Angry at this audacity, Jambavan attacked him again. Krishna over-powered him, and he fainted. When he gained consciousness, he saw Shri Rama standing in front of him. Jambavan realized the truth that Shri Rama and Krishna are manifestations of the same cosmic consciousness. Jambavan returned the jewel to him. He also requested Krishna to marry his daughter Jambavati.
Krishna returned the jewel to Satrajit. Ashamed by his actions, wanting to make amends, Satrajit asked Krishna to marry his daughter Satyabhama…”
(To be continued)
Footnote: Srimad Bhagavatam is often called the Bhagavad Purana. Authored by Ved Vyasa, the stories are about the various avatars (incarnations) of Lord Vishnu, also known as Narayana. These stories are narrated by Ved Vyasa’s son Sukhadeva to King Parikshit.
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