Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana Book 9 Chapter 15:29-41

Book 9: Chapter 15

Srimad Bhagvata Mahapurana: Book 9: Chapter 15: Verses 29-41
The stories of Rcika, Jamadagni and Parasurama

(Even) while entering his capital, Arjuna saw rushing with (great) vehemence Parasurama (the foremost of the Bhrgus), wielding a bow and armed with an arrow and an axe, clad in the skin of a black antelope and marked with matted locks brilliants as (the rays of) the sun. Arjuna sent forth (against the intruder) seventeen most formidable Aksauhinis* characterized by elephants, chariots, horses and foot-soldiers and armed with maces, swords, arrows, javelins, Sataghnis (a stone or cylindrical piece of wood studded with iron spikes) and darts. The glorious Rama destroyed them (ail) single-handed. In whatever direction appeared Rama (the destroyer of hostile armies), quick as mind and the wind, whose axe was (ever) prone to strike, there fell down to the ground warriors with their arms, thighs and necks severed and their charioteers and animals slain. Seeing his army laid low in the battle-field rendered miry with streams of blood-with their shields, ensigns, bows and bodies cut to pieces by the axe and shafts of Rama, Arjuna (the chief of the Haihayas) rushed forward in rage. Now, with his (one thousand) arms the celebrated Arjuna synchronously fitted arrows to his five hundred bows in order to pierce Rama. Rama (however), who was by far the foremost of those that (ever) wielded missiles and who had (only) one bow, simultaneously cut them down with his arrows. Again, with his hard-edged axe Rama, for his part, violently lopped off, like the hoods of a serpent, (all the thousand) arms of Arjuna, who came rushing forward in battle with (terrible) speed uprooting with his (numerous) hands rocks and trees on the battle-field. Rama severed, like the peak of a mountain, the head of Arjuna, whose arms had (thus) been lopped off. On the father having been killed, his ten thousand sons ran away out of fear. Bringing back the cow of plenty-sore distressed (at its having been removed by force from the hermitage)-together with her calf, and returning safe to his hermitage, Rama (the[1] slayer of hostile warriors) duly made her over to his father (sage Jamadagni). Rama recounted to his father as well as to his (elder) brothers his own achievement and also that which was done by Arjuna. Having heard the account, Jamadagni spoke (as follows):-"Rama, O Rama of mighty arms you have committed a (great) sin in that you slew for no purpose a ruler of men, who represented all the gods (in his person). We, Brahmanas, O dear child, have earned a title to adoration through forgiveness alone, by virtue of which Brahma, the adored of the (whole) world, attained to the position of the supreme ruler (of the universe). Through forgiveness the glory of a Brahmana shines forth like the brilliance of the sun. (Nay,) with the forgiving the almighty Lord Sri Hari is quickly pleased. Slaying a king whose head has been (duly) consecrated (at the time of coronation) is more sinful than the killing of a Brahmana. Therefore, 0 dear one, atone for the sin by reverently visiting the holy places with your mind fixed on Sri Visnu (the immortal Lord).

Thus ends the fifteenth discourse in Book Nine of the great and glorious

Bhagavata-Purana, otherwise known as the Paramahamsa-Samhita.



  1. For the strength of an Aksauhini see foot-note below I. viii. 48.

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