- Religion and Philosophy»
SATYABHAMA, BHUMI & THE ENVIRONMENT
Krishna's Third Wife
In ancient times Mother Earth (Bhumi Devi) was kidnapped by the asuras and submerged under a vast ocean. Hiranyaksha, an evil demon, had ordered the abduction of Mother Earth. He had mined the gold and precious minerals out of the Earth. He was so greedy, like modern day corporations, that he had no regard or respect for Mother Earth. He never thought about the consequences of his actions.
Vishnu's third avatar (incarnation), Varaha, the wild boar, came as a savior and killed Hiranyaksha in the ocean's depths. Bhumi was rescued on Varaha's snout and carried above the waters. He created the continents, mountains and valleys. This story in the Puranas recorded Bhumi's role as consort of Varaha. She bore a son with Varaha called Narakasura who became a demon king. Lord Brahma, the Creator, granted a boon where the demon could only be killed by his mother.
Many years later Vishnu's eighth avatar, Krishna, incarnated in a jail cell in Mathura. His two most well known wives were his first wife, Rukmini, and Satyabhama. Satyabhama was considered to be an incarnation of Bhumi Devi. So Krishna had a high respect for Mother Earth, marrying her and bringing about the means through which She could stop the madness of her son, Narakasura.
The following stories are recorded in the Srimad Bhagavatam. Satyabhama was the daughter of King Satrajit. The king was a great devotee of Surya, the sun god. Surya appeared to him because of this devotion, giving him the Syamantaka jewel. The gem could produce gold if it was worshipped properly and installed by qualified brahmins (priests). The king carried it to his house, installed and worshipped it there. No calamity would happen if it was properly worshipped.
Krishna asked the king to give it to the King of the Yadus, Ugrasena. Satrajit refused because of his greed. Greed is one of the greatest social sins of our times and effects millions of people. We all can learn from the actions of the king in this story to curb greed in all its forms.
The king's brother, Presena, went into the forest, with the gem on his neck, to hunt. Unfortunately he was killed by a lion who took the gem to a cave. Jambavant, the bear chief from the Ramayan, killed the lion and gave his son the jewel to play with. Satrajit thought Krishna murdered his brother after Presena failed to return. To clear his name Krishna journeyed to the woods to find Satrajit's brother and the jewel. He found Presena, his horse and the lion who all had been killed. Then He ventured into the cave where He saw the bear's nurse watching the child play with the gem. She warned Jambavant of the intruder. Krishna and the bear fought for 28 days before Jambavant recognized Him as the Supreme Lord he had known in Lanka. Vishnu's previous incarnation was as Rama who knew Jambavant as the bear chief who commanded a bear army. The bear chief presented Krishna with the jewel and his daughter, Jambavati, as a wife.
Krishna returned to Dvaraka with the gem and His new wife. He recounted the whole story to Satrajit who felt remorse about the events in the forest. Krishna gave him back the jewel. Satrajit decided to present Krishna with his daughter, Satyabhama, as a wife, and to give the jewel to Krishna. Satyabhama became Krishna's third wife, but Krishna refused to keep the jewel.
Krishna and Balarama went to Haspinapura because people claimed the Pandava brothers and Queen Kunti were assassinated by Duryodhan in the house made of lac. It was thought Duryodhan burned them to death in the house of lac, but the brothers and Queen survived.
While Krishna and Balarama were away, King Satrajit and his wives were murdered by Satadhava who stole the jewel. He gave the gem to Akrura for safe keeping. Queen Satyabhama went to Krishna in her grief to tell Him the whole story. He returned with Balarama to avenge the actions of the jewel thief. Krishna and his brother did not find the jewel on Satadhava. Akrura fled and went to Benares. Krishna knew this and created events and disturbances which caused Akrura to return to Dvaraka. Krishna told him to keep the jewel which caused so many problems, but Krishna wanted to show it to His family first. Then He returned the jewel to Akrura.
Krishna and Satyabhama defeated the nasty demon, Narakasura, who had abducted 16,100 princesses, stole Aditi's (Indra's mother) earrings, and Lord Varuna's (sea god) umbrella. After his death Satyabhama returned the umbrella and earrings. The princesses were accepted as wives by Lord Krishna. Both Krishna and Satyabhama battled with Indra. They had uprooted the Parijata tree and placed it on Garuda's wings to transport it back to Satyabhama's garden. Indra and the other gods did not want them to take the tree. So Mother Earth and Krishna defeated them and returned to Dvaraka to plant the fragrant tree in her garden. This tree was so fragrant that the bees from heaven followed them to Earth to enjoy its nectar.
In modern times greed has overtaken respect for Mother Earth. Big corporations do what they want to make money, no matter what the consequences are for other humans, animals and plants. This is where we need to put limits on them. Don't buy their products. This would do a lot to stop their greed. In the case of Monsanto, several countries from all over the world and some states in the United States have said "no" to their GMO seeds. The latest research shows a link between certain pesticides and the poisoned bees and the collaspe of hives. Monsanto sells some of these types of pesticides. Pollination is so vital for growth of plants, trees, flowers, fruits and vegetables. Recently children were poisoned by a pesticide in cooking oil in India. This why we must say "no" to these kinds of products and chemicals. As a chemically sensitive person, I only know too well personally the health effects of these chemicals and products. Buy natural, organic products and support environmental laws to protect our health and our dearest Mother, Bhumi Devi. Remove chemical products from our temples and replace them with natural alternatives. Let us live our tradition of ecology found in the Vedas and the Puranas. Bhumi is the Mother who sustains us all!
JAI SHRI SATYABHAMA! JAI SHRI BHUMI DEVI! JAI SHRI KRISHNA!