Prayers to the Lord of Guruvayoor from Narayaneeyam -8

Prayers to the Lord of Guruvayoor from Narayaneeyam -8
Narayaneeyam, considered to be a Magnum Opus of Meppathur
Narayanabhattathiri,  is a masterly
summary of  Srimad Bhagavatam in 1034
sanskrit slokas of great poetic merit. 
The whole work is divided into 100 dasakas of mostly ten slokas  each. It was completed in 100 days at the end
of which Bhattathiri, who was suffering from chronic rheumatic disease, was
completely cured and also had a beatific vision of the Lord of Guruvayoor as Venugopala
. In the last sloka of each dasaka Bhattathiri cries out his heart,  praying to the Lord to end his afflictions
and restore his health.  .        
below is the collection of last slokas from Daskasmn  71 to 80 of this great devotional work with a
prosaic translation in English.  A brief
note on the contents of each dasaka is also given, where possible, to
put the slokas in context.   
a friend of Kamsa, came in the form of a horse to kill Krishna.  He kicked on Krishna’s chest with his hooves
but Krishna stepped aside with lightning speed and threw him off with great
force.  Keshi came charging again towards
Krishna who put his hand into his mouth. 
The hand started growing and the horse fell dead with asphyxia.  Once Krishna was playing thief and
thief-catchers with the gopas.  Vyomasura
mingled with the gopas and was in the group of thieves.  He put the gopas and the cows in a cave and
closed the cave with a large rock. 
Krishna found out the thief and killed him. This dasaka ends with the
following sloka:    
रानन्दमूर्च्छामतुलां व्रजस्य।
In this
way Lord of Guruvayur ! you gave the inhabitants of Vraja more and more joy
with your ever new exploits and pastimes. O Paramatman! Save me from my
दशकम्-७२ श्लोकसंख्या-१२
heard from Narada that Krishna was in Vraja. He sent Akrura to Vraja to bring
Krishna to Mathura on the pretext of Dhanuryagna.   Akrura was a devotee of Krishna but was
prevented from seeing him for fear of Kamsa. 
Now that Kamsa himself was sending him to Krishna he was quite excited
and overjoyed about it.  All through his
journey to Vraja he was thinking of Krishna only, whether he would see Krishna,
touch him, embrace him and what Krishna would talk to him and so on, with the
result he was fully immersed in Krishna consciousness.  At those places where Krishna had played and
where he had left the marks of his feet, Akrura fell down and covered himself
with that dust. While he reached Nanda’s home he saw Krishna watching the cows
being milked. It seemed that he was waiting, along with Balarama, for the
arrival of his devotee Akrura. Krishna and Balarma had bathed in the evening
and were in their yellow and blue clothes respectively.  Both were wearing not little and not too many
adornments.  Akrura got down from his
chariot at a little distance and bowed to Krishna and Balaram.  Krishna lifted him up, embraced him and, taking
his hand,  led him inside the house.  They spent the whole night talking about
various matters.   
following sloka concludes this dasaka:
चन्द्रभगागृहे नु
gopis did not get your company that night and) they thought that you, a cheat,
were probably spending the night in the house of Chandra or that of Radha or of
Maitravinda.  O Lord of Guruvayur! save
me  (from my afflictions)
दशकम्-७३ श्लोकसंख्या-१०
that Krishna was going to Mathura with Akrura, the gopis felt very sad and, in
groups, complained ‘What is this?, How did this come about?  How can the kind-hearted Krishna abandon us
who have no other refuge?”   While
leaving for Mathura in the early hours of the morning Krishna sent a messenger
to the gopis that he (Krishna) would be back very soon and would be with all of
them and would submerge them in the ocean of nectar (bliss).  Krishna and Balaram set out to Mathura by the
chariot of Akrura, followed by the sad and beseeching glances of gopis.  Krishna also cast his soft glances towards
the gopis as if to reassure them. When they reached the banks of Yamuna Akrura
got down from the chariot for performing 
his morning ablutions.  When he
dipped into the river he saw   Krishna
under the water.  When he lifted his head
from the water he saw Krishna also in the chariot.  Wondering, Akrura dipped again into the water
and there he saw Mahavishnu reclining on Adishesha with discus, conch, mace and
the lotus in his four hands.  Akrura was
submerged an an ocean of bliss and he sang the praises of the Lord.  The vision of the Lord was lost but the
experience of bliss continued and his hairs stood on end. Akrura went back to
the chariot enriched by this experience. Bhattathiri concludes this dasaka with
the following sloka:
अतिहर्षनिरुत्तरेण सार्द्धं
पवनेश! पाहि
O Lord of
Guruvayur! you asked Akrura “Was it very cold in the Yamuna?  Your hairs are bristling. What is the
matter?”.  Akrura, with abundance of Joy
in him, did not reply and was silent. 
Please save me from my diseases
दशकम्-७४ श्लोकसंख्या-१०
and others reached Mathura in the afternoon and they had food in a park in the
outskirts of the town.  Then Krishna set
out on a sight-seeing trip of Mathura. 
While he was passing through the Rajpath ( the main road) the women of
Mathura assembled in the balconies of the houses raring to see Krishna about
whom they had heard so much.  They were
excited at the prospect and considered themselves fortunate to have Krishna’s darshan
Krishna, for his part, filled their hearts with joy by the glances from
the corners of his eyes.  On the way
Krishna saw a washer man and asked for a few clothes to wear but he refused
asking “Who would give you the clothes of the King?”.  Krishna severed his head from his body and he
attained mukti.  Krishna also met a beautiful young woman with
a stoop who was carrying perfumes like sandal paste for Kamsa.  She gave some sandal paste to Krishna who,
holding her by his hands and lifting her up by the chin removed her stoop and
she became a world beauty.  She was
straight in her mind and Krishna made her straight in body also to reflect that
mind. He promised her that he would come again to see her. Mathura was in celebration
mood.  Krishna entered the place where
the bow was kept and, struck by his beauty and majesty, the guards kept a
respectable distance. The bow had been worshipped and adorned with flowers and
ornaments.  Krishna lifted the bow,
stringed it and broke it in the twinkling of an eye, before any one could say
anything. The sound of the bow breaking 
put fear into the heart of Kamsa and portended his death the next
day.  Bhattathiri concludes this dasaka
with the following sloka:
शिष्टैर्दुष्टजनैश्च दृष्टमहिमा प्रीत्या च
न्नानन्दन्नवतारकार्यघटनाद्वातेश! संरक्ष माम् ॥७४.१०॥
Lord of Guruvayur! You are seen by the good with love and by the wicked with
fear. After seeing the affluence of the city of Mathura and wandering through
its streets you went back to the park in the evening. You spoke to Sridama
about your sorrow because of separation from Radha and you went to sleep happy that
the purpose of taking this incarnation was about to be achieved.
दशकम्-७५ श्लोकसंख्या-१०
Next  day morning 
every one assembled at their appointed places for seeing the wrestling
competition. When Krishna and Balarama came to see the competition the entrance
was blocked by the elephant Kuvalayapeeda. Prompted by the mahout, the elephant
caught Krishna in its trunk but Krishna slipped out of it, hit the elephant
hard on the front portion of its head and 
playfully hid himself between its legs. Emerging again Krishna playfully
felled the elephant on the ground and wrenched out both its tusks.  Krishna and Balaram,  each carrying a tusk on his shoulder,  entered the theatre.  Struck by their handsomeness some people said
that Nanda was fortunate, others said the gopis were fortunate, still others
said Yashoda was fortunate.  Some said
that we are the fortunate ones in the three worlds as we are able to feast our
eyes on Krishna and Balaram. Chanura approached Krishna and Mushtika took on Balaram
and started raining blows on them with their fists.  People commented on the cruelty of setting
the hardened wrestlers on these soft and tender boys. But Krishna and Balaram
made mincemeat of the wrestlers and despatched them to the city of Yama.
Krishna then dragged Kamsa from his throne, 
pushed him to the ground and fell on him, finishing him off.  Kamsa, who was always thinking of Krishna
fearing death from him, attained Sayujya;
his soul merged with Krishna.  Bhattathiri
concludes this dasaka with the following sloka:  
तद्भ्रातॄनष्ट पिष्ट्वा द्रुतमथ पितरौ
राजानमुच्चैर्यदुकुलमखिलं मोदयन् कामदानैः ।
भक्तानामुत्तमं चोद्धवममरगुरोराप्तनीतिं सखायम्
! रुन्द्धि
Lord of Guruvayur! You killed also the eight brothers of kamsa, bowed to your
parents, crowned Ugrasena as the King, made Yadavas happy by fulfilling their
desires, got Uddhava, who had learned Niti sastra from Brihaspati, as friend
and lived happily in Mathura.  May you
relieve me from all my ailments.    
दशकम्-७६ श्लोकसंख्या-१०
and Balarama went to Sandeepani’s ashram and learnt all that was to be learnt
in sixty four days.  As gurudakshnia Krishna brought back the
guru’s son who had died young.  The gopis
were suffering from the pangs of separation from Krishna all these days when
Krishna was in Mathura.  They were
spending their days in unbroken remembrance of Krishna who, overcome by
compassion, sent Uddhava to offer them solace. He also wanted Uddhava to see
for himself the intensity of  gopis’ love
for him (Krishna). Reaching Vraja in the evening, Uddhava gladdened the hearts
of Nanda and Yasoda by describing the exploits of Krishna. Seeing the chariot
in the morning,  the gopis assembled near
it leaving all their household chores. 
They saw Uddhava decked out in exactly the same way as Krishna.  Remembering Krishna’s playful actions and his
exploits the gopis were unable to utter anything, their throat choking with
emotions.  Then, with difficulty,  they asked Uddhava whether he had been sent by
Krishna to meet with his parents, Nanda and Yashoda.  Where is Krishna who is the apple of the eyes
of the beauties of Mathura?  How can any
woman forget his loving embraces, kisses, playfulness and the sweet nothings he
used to utter?     
concludes this dasaka with the following sloka: 

इत्यानन्दाकुलमुपगतं गोकुलादुद्धवं तं
॥ ७६.११॥
Uddhava returned from Vraja overcome by the intensity of
gopis’ loving devotion to Krishna  the
like of which is neither seen nor heard in the whole world.  He mentally offers his salutations to the
gopis and was brimming with joy.  O Lord
of Guruvayoor! You were extremely glad to see Uddhava in that state of mind.
Please save me from all my ailments.
दशकम्-७७ श्लोकसंख्या-१२
Sairandhri,  whose stoop had been straightened by Krishna,
was pining in  love for him and was
eagerly awaiting his arrival daily as promised. 
Krishna kept his promise and spent a few days with her and a son,
Upasloka, was
out of their union.  Krishna  visited Akrura at his residence along with
Balarama and Uddhava.  Akrura was beside
himself with joy and offered loving worship to Krishna and the others. Krishna
then gathered information about the Pandavas who had returned from their exile
and the activities of Dhritarashtra. He decimated the army of Jarasandha,
son-in-law of Kamsa , who invaded Mathura several times.  Each time his army was routed but he was
allowed to return only to come back again with a fresh army. When he was coming
prepared for the eighteenth attack, Krishna saw Kalayavana coming with three
crores of yavana soldiers. Immediately he commissioned Viswakarma to build the
capital city Dwaraka in the midst of the sea and shifted his subjects to the new
city.  Feigning fear from Kalayavana,
Krishna ran ahead and disappeared in a mountain.  Kalayavana, in hot pursuit, entered a cave in
the mountain in which Muchukunda was in deep sleep.  Kicked by Kalayavana, Muchukunda reduced him
to ashes by the power of his tapas. 
Krishna revealed his captivating form to Muchukunda, a staunch devotee.
Bhattathiri concludes this dasaka with the following sloka:
तदनु मथुरां गत्वा हत्वा चमूं
then went to Mathura and decimated the army of Kalayavana. Prevented on the way
by the army of Jarasandha, You allowed him to win this last time.  You then returned to Dwaraka, the city in the
middle of the sea. O Lord of Guruvayur! save me (from my afflictions).
दशकम्-७८ श्लोकसंख्या-१०
daughter of the King of Vidarbha, was  in
love with Krishna about whose qualities of head and heart she had heard from
his devotees.  Her brother Rukmi,
however, was bent upon giving her in marriage to the wicked Shishupala, king of
Chedi and a friend of his.  Rukmini, for
long deeply in love with Krishna, sent a faithful brahmin as a messenger to
Krishna.  Received by Krishna with
honours in his palace, the brahmin communicated to Krishna the depth of
Rukmini’s love for him, her predicament because of Rukmi’s intentions and her
determination to give up her life if Krishna did not turn up for her
rescue.  Rukmini had also suggested that
Krishna should abduct her, snatching her from the hands of Shishupala and his
friends, and marry her in the Rakshasa type of marriage ceremony.  Bhattathiri concludes this dasaka with the
following sloka:       

गुरुमरुत्पुरनायक मे भवान्
along with the brahmin who was very happy, hastened to Kundina by chariot. O
Lord of Guruvayoor! Kindly attenuate all my difficulties.  
दशकम्-७९ श्लोकसंख्या-१०
Krishna,  along
with Balarama and the Yadava army,  entered the city of Kundina welcomed by
Bhishmaka, father of Rukmini.  Informed
of the arrival of Krishna by the brahmin, Rukmini was relieved and happy and
she heartily saluted the brahmin for the good turn he had done.  The people of Kundina,  seeing the captivating form of Krishna and
seeing how perfect a match he would be for their princess, despised the
activities of Rukmi in trying to give Rukmini in marriage to Sisupala.  As was the custom, Rukmini along with her
maids, visited the temple of Goddess Uma and prayed that Krishna be her
husband.  While returning from the
worship,  Krishna, with lightning speed,
lifted her and,  putting her in his
chariot,  drove away. The princes waiting
for the hand of Rukmini stood stunned by the rapidity with which things had
happened. Rukmi followed the chariot and offered battlle but his attempt was
foiled by the Yadava soldiers. Rukmi was allowed to escape with his life but
with his head shaven
concludes this dasaka with the following sloka:
प्रणयिनीमधिकं सुखयन्निमां ।
गदतान्तिमपाकुरु ॥७९.१२॥
made your consort Rukmini happy and joyful by your adoration and by being a
doting husband. O Mukunda!  we always
talk and think about your exploits and leelas. Kindly remove all our
obtained from Sun god a jewel known as syamantaka.  Krishna asked for the jewel from him but Satrajit
refused to part with it. Satraji’s brother Prasena went on a hunt in the forest
wearing the syamantaka jewel around his neck. 
A lion killed Prasena and grabbed the jewel mistaking it for a piece of
meat.  Jambavan killed the lion and gave
the jewel to his child for playing. 
Since Krishna had wanted the jewel Satrajit presumed Krishna must have
killed his brother for the jewel. This started a gossip among people about
Krishna.  To clear himself, Krishna went
into the forest and zeroed in on Jambavan who put up a stiff fight.  After a protracted struggle Jambavan, a devotee
of Lord Rama, realised that Krishna with whom he was fighting was none other
than another incarnation of Rama.  He
gave the jewel to Krishna along with his daughter Jambavathi. Krishna restored
the jewel to Satrajit who, ashamed of his behaviour, atoned his mistake by
giving his daughter Satyabhama’s hand to Krishna along with the jewel. But
Krishna returned the jewel to Satrajit himself. 
Heeding the words of Akrura and Kritavarma, Satadhanwa killed Satrajit
and appropriated the syamantaka jewel.  A
grieving Satyabhama went to Hastinapura where Krishna consoled her and killed Satadhanwa.  Bhattathiri concludes this dasaka with the
following sloka:

भामाकुचान्तशयनः पवनेश पायाः ॥८०.११॥

O Lord of Guruvayur who takes rest on
Satyabham’s bosom! You called  Kritavarma
and Akrura who had gone away afraid of you and brought to light the jewel (
which had been left with Akrura by Satadhanwa). You were then happy to leave
the jewel with Akrura as his conduct and character were good.   May
you save me (from my afflictions)

Sri P R Ramamurthy Ji was the author of this website. When he started this website in 2009, he was in his eighties. He was able to publish such a great number of posts in limited time of 4 years. We appreciate his enthusiasm for Sanskrit Literature. Authors story in his own words :

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