Formerly, Garuda used to eat snakes. All the snakes came to an agreement with Garuda and every month a snake was offered as sacrifice to Garuda at the foot of a particular tree on the new moon day. All snakes used to offer to Garuda their share of sacrifice. Garuda was highly pleased with this arrangement. But the serpent Kaliya, son of Kadru, was very proud of his strength. Therefore he did not make any offering himself to Garuda but took away the offerings made by others. Garuda was incensed and attacked him. Kaliya was overpowered in the fight. He sought shelter in a deep pool of water in the Yamuna.
Once upon a time Garuda caught a fish in that pool of water and was about to eat it. Rishi Soubhari said, "O Garuda! Do not eat this fish." Garuda did not pay any attention to the words of the Rishi. The wailings of the other fishes touched the heart of the Rishi. In order to save the fishes, the Rishi pronounced a curse on Garuda that he would die if he entered that pool any more.Kaliya knew about this. Therefore he sought shelter in that pool of water with his family and it had been occupying the river Yamuna and its banks.It had poisoned the waters of the Yamuna and also dried the forests nearby by the poison airs breathed by it.
Sri Krishna noticed that the most venomous snake had rendered the water of the Yamuna poisonous. He wanted to expel the serpent from the river in order to purify the water. Sri Krishna tightened His girdle, climbed a lofty Kadamba tree, and jumped into the pool of water. The serpent fiercely attacked Krishna and stung Him in His vital parts. It completely enclosed Him in its coils. The cows wept and the Gopa boys became senseless. Nanda and other Gopas came out in search of Krishna. They saw Him in the grasp of the powerful serpent and wept bitterly.
Sri Krishna extricated Himself from the clutches of the serpent. He began to sport with it. He got upon its hoods and danced upon them. It had one thousand hoods, one hundred being the chief. Thus attacked, Kaliya looked for an opportunity to bite Him, but Krishna moved around him. Subduing Kaliya Krishna immediately pressed down the serpent’s hoods and jumped up on them. He who is the original artist of all fine arts, such as dancing, began to dance upon the hoods of the serpent, although they were moving to and fro. Upon seeing this, the denizens of the upper planets showered flowers, beat drums, played different types of flutes and sang various prayers and songs.
In this way, all the denizens of heaven, such as theGandharvas,Siddhas anddemigods, became very much pleased. Kaliya had about a hundred hoods, but Krishna took control of them. Gradually, Kaliya was reduced to struggling for his very life. He vomited all kinds of refuse and exhaled fire. While throwing up poisonous material from within, Kaliya became reduced in his sinful situation. Kaliya then began to vomit blood instead of poison; he was completely fatigued. His whole body appeared to be broken by the kicks of the Lord. Within his mind, however, he finally began to understand that Krishna is theSupreme Personality of Godhead, and he surrendered unto Him.
Sri Krishna trampled down with His feet each one of the hoods. The body of the serpent was shattered. The serpent sought the protection of the Lord. The wives of the serpent, known as the Nagapatnis, saw that their husband had been subdued by the Lord’s kicking and that he was almost at the point of death due to bearing the heavy burden of the Lord, within whose abdomen the whole universe remains. Kaliya’s wives also surrendered unto the Supreme Lord and began to pray. The Nagapatnis knew that Krishna is the shelter of all surrendered souls, and they desired to release their husband from the impending danger by pleasing the Lord with their prayer.The Nagapatnis were astonished that, although Kaliya had the body of a serpent as the result of grievous sinful activities, at the same time he was in contact with the Lord to the extent that the Lord’s lotus feet were touching his hoods. The wives of the serpent praised Krishna and prayed for their husband's life.The Lord stopped His dance. Kaliya slowly recovered consciousness.
The Lord was pleased with Kaliya and his wives. Immediately after hearing His order, the wives began to worship Him with great offerings of nice garments, flowers, garlands, jewels, ornaments, sandal pulp, lotus flowers, and nice eatable fruits. In this way they pleased the master of Garuda, of whom they were very much afraid. Then, obeying the orders of Lord Krsna, all of them left the lake within the Yamuna.
Krishna said, "O Kaliya !Do not stay here any more. Go to the sea immediately with all your kith and kin and, wives. Let the water of the Yamuna be used by the cows and men. I know that you left Ramanaka island for fear of Garuda and came to live in this pool. But now, as your hoods bear the marks of My feet, Garuda will not touch you." Thereupon Kaliya proceeded to the Ramanaka island in the sea with his wives, friends and children. The waters of the Yamuna then turned as sweet as nectar itself.
कालिन्द्यन्तर्द्वादशाब्दम् तपस्यन् ।
मीनव्राते स्नेहवान् भोगलोले
तार्क्ष्यं साक्षादैक्षताग्रे कदाचित् ॥१॥
tvatsevOtkaH saubharirnaama puurvaM
kaalindyantardvaadashaabdaM tapasyan |
miinavraate snehavaan bhOgalOle
taarkshyaM saakshaadaikshataagre kadaachit || 1
Long ago, a sage called Soubhari, who wished to serve Thee, was doing penance,immersed in the waters of the river Kaalindi, for twelve years. During this time hebecame deeply attached to the shoals of fish, indulging in romantic sports, in thewaters around him. Then, one day he saw Garuda, in person, in front of him.
Dasakam: 054 -- Slokam: 02
त्वद्वाहं तं सक्षुधं तृक्षसूनुं
मीनं कञ्चिज्जक्षतं लक्षयन् स: ।
तप्तश्चित्ते शप्तवानत्र चेत्त्वं
जन्तून् भोक्ता जीवितं चापि मोक्ता ॥२॥
tvadvaahaM taM sakshudhaM tR^ikshasuunuM
miinaM ka~nchijjakshataM lakshayan saH |
taptashchitte shaptavaanatra chettvaM
jantuun bhOktaa jiivitaM chaapi mOktaa || 2
Thy mount that Garuda who was hungry and was eating a fish. Seeing that, Saubhari was mentally very agitated and cursed Garuda saying that he would lose his life if he ate any creatures there.
Dasakam: 054 -- Slokam: 03
तस्मिन् काले कालिय: क्ष्वेलदर्पात्
सर्पाराते: कल्पितं भागमश्नन् ।
पक्षक्षिप्तस्तद्दुरापं पयोऽगात् ॥३॥
tasmin kaale kaaliyaH kshveladarpaat
sarpaaraateH kalpitaM bhaagamashnan |
tena krOdhaat tvatpadaambhOjabhaajaa
pakshakshiptaH tadduraapaM payO(a)gaat || 3
At that time, Kaaliya the serpent was full of pride due to the power of his poison. He ate away the offerings set apart for Garuda, the enemy of serpents. Angered at this Garuda who is devoted to Thy lotus feet, attacked him with his wings and chased him. So Kaaliya took refuge in that part of the river Kaalindi, which was out of bounds for Garuda, due to the sage's curse.
Dasakam: 054 -- Slokam: 04
घोरे तस्मिन् सूरजानीरवासे
तीरे वृक्षा विक्षता: क्ष्वेलवेगात् ।
पक्षिव्राता: पेतुरभ्रे पतन्त:
कारुण्यार्द्रं त्वन्मनस्तेन जातम् ॥४॥
ghOre tasmin suurajaaniiravaase
tiire vR^ikshaa vikshataaH kshvelavegaat |
pakshivraataaH peturabhre patantaH
kaaruNyaardraM tvanmanastena jaatam ||4
The waters of the river Yamuna, in the portion inhabited by the dreadful Kaaliya,became contaminated by the viciousness of his deadly poison, , destroying the trees onthe river bank, and causing The birds who flew in the sky above, dropped down dead. Thy heart melted in compassion and was moved with pity seeing the plight of the creatures.Dasakam: 054 -- Slokam: 05
काले तस्मिन्नेकदा सीरपाणिं
मुक्त्वा याते यामुनं काननान्तम् ।
गोगोपाला व्यापिबन् क्ष्वेलतोयम् ॥५॥
kaale tasminnekadaa siirapaaNiM
muktvaayaate yaamunaM kaananaantam |
tvayyuddaama griiShma bhiiShmOShmataptaa
gO gOpaalaa vyaapiban kshvelatOyam || 5
At that time, once Thou had gone to the forest region, near the river Yamuna, without Balarama. In the intense summer heat, The cows and cowherds, drank the poisonous water of the river, Yamuna.
Dasakam: 054 -- Slokam: 06
नश्यज्जीवान् विच्युतान् क्ष्मातले तान्
विश्वान् पश्यन्नच्युत त्वं दयार्द्र: ।
प्राप्योपान्तं जीवयामासिथ द्राक्
पीयूषाम्भोवर्षिभि: श्रीकटक्षै: ॥६॥
nashyajjiivaan vichyutaan kshmaatale taan
vishvaan pashyannachyuta tvaM dayaardraH |
praapyOpaantaM jiivayaamaasitha draak
piiyuuShaambhO varShibhiH shriikaTaakshaiH || 6
Oh Achyuta ! They had all lost their lives and had fallen on the ground. Thou were overcome with pity and approached them. Thou shed Thy auspicious glances on them which were like showering nectar, which soon revived them.Dasakam: 054 -- Slokam: 07
किं किं जातो हर्षवर्षातिरेक:
सर्वाङ्गेष्वित्युत्थिता गोपसङ्घा: ।
दृष्ट्वाऽग्रे त्वां त्वत्कृतं तद्विदन्त-
स्त्वामालिङ्गन् दृष्टनानाप्रभावा: ॥७॥
kiM kiM jaatO harShavarShaatirekaH
sarvaangeShvityutthitaa gOpasanghaaH |
dR^iShTvaagre tvaaM tvatkR^itaM tadvidantaH
tvaamaalingan dR^iShTanaanaa prabhaavaaH || 7
The cow herd boys wondering “What is this?Why is there a great joy which cools our body”Stood up and seeing you in front of them,And remembering the other divine acts that you did,And having understood that this also is your sport,Came running to you and hugged you.
Dasakam: 054 -- Slokam: 08
गावश्चैवं लब्धजीवा: क्षणेन
स्फीतानन्दास्त्वां च दृष्ट्वा पुरस्तात् ।
द्रागावव्रु: सर्वतो हर्षबाष्पं
व्यामुञ्चन्त्यो मन्दमुद्यन्निनादा: ॥८॥
gaavashchaivaM labdhajiivaaH kshaNena
sphiitaanandaastvaaM cha dR^iShTvaa purastaat |
draagaavavruH sarvatO harShabaaShpaM
vyaamu~nchantyO mandamudyanninaadaaH || 8
Similarly, the cows too, which had regained their lives, instantly, full of delight at seeing Thee in front of them, rallied round Thee, expressing their gratitude, by shedding tears of joy and mooing in soft tones.
Dasakam: 054 -- Slokam: 09
रोमाञ्चोऽयं सर्वतो न: शरीरे
भूयस्यन्त: काचिदानन्दमूर्छा ।
आश्चर्योऽयं क्ष्वेलवेगो मुकुन्दे-
त्युक्तो गोपैर्नन्दितो वन्दितोऽभू: ॥९॥
rOmaa~nchO(a)yaM sarvatO naH shariire
bhuuyasyantaH kaachidaanandamuurchChaa |
aashcharyO(a)yaM kshvelavegO mukundetyuktO
gOpaiH nanditO vanditO(a)bhuuH || 9
Dasakam: 054 -- Slokam: 10
Oh Mukunda ! The cowherds, with their hairs standing on end and the thrills of ecstasyvibrating through their body, could not find words to express their feelings. Theythought it was due to the strange effect of the poison. They praised and thanked Thee profusely, with joy.
एवं भक्तान् मुक्तजीवानपि त्वं
रोगात् पाया वायुगेहाधिवास ॥१०॥
evaM bhaktaanmuktajiivaanapi tvaM
mugdhaapaangaiH astarOgaamstanOShi |
taadR^igbhuuta sphiita kaaruNya bhuumaa
rOgaatpaayaa vaayugehaadhinaatha ||10
In this manner, by Thy charming glances, the devotees who had lost their lives were revived and were rendered devoid of diseases. Oh Guruvayurappa of suchboundless mercy ! May Thou guard me against illness.