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The disappearance of the Yadu dynasty.
After observing inauspicious omens in the sky and on the earth, Lord Krishna spoke to the assembled Yadus in the Sudharma assembly hall.
The Supreme Lord said, “Just see all of the terrible omens that appear to be just like flags of death. Let us not remain here any longer. First, let all of the women, children and old men go to Shankhoddhara. Then, we shall go to Prabhasa-kshetra, where the River Sarasvati flows. There, we can bathe, fast, fix our minds in meditation, and worship the demigods. With the help of qualified brahmanas, we can perform religious rituals for our good fortune, and we can also worship these brahmanas with gifts of land, cows, gold, clothing and houses. This is surely the best means to counteract the impending adversity and bring about good fortune.”
Upon hearing this, the Yadu elders uttered, “so be it”. A few months had passed since the Yadu boys were cursed. Those who are eternal associates of the Lord remained at Dvaraka, whereas the demigods were instructed to leave. Anyone who dies at Dvaraka goes back home, back to Godhead. Because the Lord desired that the demigods who had appeared in the Yadu dynasty be reinstated in their position, it was arranged for them to leave Dvaraka.
After crossing the ocean in boats, these members of the Yadu dynasty proceeded on chariots to Prabhasa. At Prabhasa, the Yadus first bathed, and then performed various religious ceremonies under Lord Krishna’s direction, for the satisfaction of the forefathers, demigods, and great sages.
At the completion of these rituals, the Yadus gave charity to the brahmanas- cows, clothing, bedding, gold, blankets, horses, elephants, girls and land. Then, they fed the brahmanas sumptuously with food that had been offered to the Supreme Lord, and at last, they offered them respectful obeisances. Finally, the Yadus ate with the brahmanas’ permission, and by the influence of Destiny, they indulged in drinking maireya, a kind of wine made from rice, which made them completely intoxicated. Being thus bewildered by Krishna’s illusory energy, the Yadus became arrogant and then, at sunset, a terrible quarrel broke out among them.
Becoming enraged, the Yadus grabbed their weapons and attacked one another. While riding on elephants and chariots, as well as on donkeys, camels, bulls and even human beings- they fought fiercely. Pradyumna fought with Samba, Akrura with Kuntibhoja, and Aniruddha with Satyaki. Completely abandoning their natural friendship, the members of the various Yadu clans- the Dasharhas, Vrishnis, Andhakas, Bhojas, Shurasenas and Kuntis- slaughtered one another. Being thus bewildered, sons fought with fathers, brothers with brothers, and grandsons with grandfathers.
Finally, when all of their weapons were broken or used up, the Yadavas grabbed the tall stalks of cane that were growing nearby. Indeed, as soon as stalks came into the warriors’ hands, they transformed into iron rods. As the fighting continued, Lord Krishna intervened and tried to stop the carnage, but the Yadus attacked Him as well. In fact, they had become so bewildered, that they even considered Lord Balarama to be their enemy. With weapons in hand, the Yadus rushed at Balarama, intending to kill Him, and this enraged both Lord Krishna and Balarama. Picking up iron stalks, They entered the fray, killing all of those who opposed Them.
At last, when all the members of His Own dynasty were destroyed, Lord Krishna considered that the burden of the earth had at last been removed. Lord Balarama then sat down on the shore of the ocean and fixed His mind on the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Thus merging Himself within Himself, He gave up His pastimes in this world.
After witnessing this, Lord Krishna went to the banks of the River Sarasvati, and after sipping water, He sat down quietly underneath a nearby pipppala tree. Krishna exhibited a four-armed form of dark complexion and golden effulgence. A beautiful smile graced His lotus-face, which was framed by locks of hair. His shark-shaped earrings glittered, as did the Kaustubha jewel and other royal ornaments. The Lord’s personal weapons were present in their embodied forms. As Krishna sat, He kept His left foot, with its reddish sole, upon His right thigh.
A hunter named Jara happened to come to a place nearby, where the Rivers Sarasvati and Hiranya together flow into the sea. This place is now known as Bhrigu-tirtha. When the hunter, Jara, saw Lord Krishna’s reddish foot from a distance, he mistook it to be the face of a deer. Jara was carrying the arrow that he had previously made from the unground lump of iron from Samba’s club. He shot that very arrow, and it pierced Lord Krishna’s lotus foot. To bewilder the atheists, as well as to benefit his devotee, Lord Krishna manifested a special form created by His illusory energy, and it is into the lotus foot of this form that the arrow entered. This illusory form was quite distinct form the eternal four-armed form of the Lord.
When Jara understood that it was Krishna seated at that spot, and not a deer, he became terrified, because of his offense. He went and fell down before the Lord, placing his head upon His lotus feet.
Jara said, “O Madhusudana, I am most sinful! I have done this horrible act out of ignorance, so please forgive me.”
“My dear Lord, please kill me at once so that I may never again commit such an act of aggression against saintly persons.”
The Supreme Personality of Godhead said, “My dear Jara, get up. Don’t be afraid. What you have done is actually My desire. Now, with My permission, you may ascend to the spiritual world.”
Being so instructed, the hunter circumambulated Lord Krishna three times and bowed down to offer his obeisances. Jara then departed in the airplane that had arrived, just to carry him back to the spiritual sky.
The hunter, Jara, was actually Bhrigu Muni, who in a former age had impudently placed his foot upon Lord Vishnu’s chest. As a result of this offense, Bhrigu Muni had to accept a birth as a degraded hunter. Still, the Lord was not happy to see how His devotee had fallen into such a condition of life, and so, while concluding His pastimes, He arranged for his deliverance.
Daruka had been searching for his master, Lord Krishna, and when he came in the vicinity, he could smell the aroma of tulasi flowers present in the breeze. Then, while following that scent, Daruka came to where Lord Krishna was resting at the foot of the banyan tree. Upon seeing the Lord, Daruka’s eyes filled with tears. He quickly got down from his chariot, ran toward his master and fell at His lotus feet.
Daruka said, “Just as, on moonless nights, people cannot find their way, so, having lost sight of Your lotus feet, I have been wandering blindly in the darkness.”
While Daruka was speaking, Lord Krishna’s chariot rose up into the sky, along with its horses and flag that was marked with the emblem of Garuda. Then, all of the divine weapons of Lord Vishnu followed the chariot, and Daruka was most astonished to see this.
Lord Janardana then said, “Daruka, go to Dvaraka and inform Our family members how all of the Yadus have destroyed one another. In addition, tell them of Balarama’s disappearance and My Own present condition. You and your relatives should not remain in Dvaraka, because now that I have abandoned it, the ocean will soon inundate the city. Take your relatives, along with My parents, and, under Arjuna’s protection, go to Indraprastha. Remain fixed in devotion to Me and know for certain that all of these pastimes are a display of My illusory potency. With this understanding, remain peaceful in mind and detached from material life.”
Being thus ordered, Daruka circumambulated the Lord and offered his obeisances again and again. After placing Lord Krishna’s lotus feet upon his head, he departed with a sad heart.