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Krsna Slays Bakasura

All the cowherd boys would daily go to the bank of the river Yamuna to water their calves. Usually, when the calves drank water from the Yamuna, the boys also drank. One day, after drinking, when they were sitting on the bank of the river, they saw a huge animal which looked something like a duck and was as big as a hill. Its top was as strong as a thunderbolt. When they saw that unusual animal, they became afraid of it. The name of this beast was Bakasura, and he was a friend of Kamsa's. He appeared on the scene suddenly and immediately attacked Krsna with his pointed, sharp beaks and quickly swallowed Him up. When Krsna was thus swallowed, all the boys, headed by Balarama, became almost breathless, as if they had died. But when the Bakasura demon was swallowing up Krsna, he felt a burning fiery sensation in his throat. This was due to the glowing effulgence of Krsna. The demon quickly threw Krsna up and tried to kill Him by pinching Him in his beaks. Bakasura did not know that although Krsna was playing the part of a child of Nanda Maharaja, He was still the original father of Lord Brahma, the creator of the universe. The child of mother Yasoda, who is the reservoir of pleasure for the demigods and who is the maintainer of saintly persons, caught hold of the beaks of the great gigantic duck, and, before His cowherd boyfriends, bifurcated his mouth, just as a child very easily splits a blade of grass. From the sky, the denizens of the heavenly planets showered flowers like the cameli, the most fragrant of all flowers, as a token of their congratulations. Accompanying the showers of flowers was a vibration of bugles, drums and conchshells.

When the boys saw the showering of flowers and heard the celestial sounds, they became struck with wonder. When they saw Krsna, they all, including Balarama, were so pleased that it seemed as if they had regained their very source of life. As soon as they saw Krsna coming towards them, they one after another embraced the son of Nanda and held Him to their chests. After this, they assembled all the calves under their charge and began to return home.

Krsna Book, Chapter 11

"When Krsna, the leader of the Vaisnavas, saw that the demon Bakasura, the friend of Kamsa, was endeavoring to attack Him, with His arms He captured the demon by the two halves of the beak, and in the presence of all the cowherd boys Krsna very easily bifurcated Him, as a child splits a blade of virana grass. By thus killing the demon, Krsna very much pleased the denizens of heaven."

Srimad-Bhagavatam 10:11:51

"Krsna, who was the father of Lord Brahma but who was acting as the son of a cowherd man, became like fire, burning the root of the demon's throat, and the demon Bakasura immediately disgorged Him. When the demon saw that Krsna, although having been swallowed, was unharmed, he immediately attacked Krsna again with his sharp beak."

Srimad-Bhagavatam 10:11:50

"Once the Bakasura demon assumed the shape of a very big duck and opened his mouth in order to swallow Krsna and all the cowherd boys. When Krsna was entering into the demon's mouth, Balarama and the other cowherd boys almost fainted and appeared as though they had no life. Even if devotees are illusioned by some ghastly scene or by any accidental occurrence, they never forget Krsna. Even in the greatest danger they can remember Krsna. This is the benefit of Krsna consciousness: even at the time of death, when all the functions of the body become dislocated, the devotee can remember Krsna in his innermost consciousness, and this saves him from falling down into material existence. In this way Krsna consciousness immediately takes one from the material platform to the spiritual world."

In this connection there is a statement about persons who died at Mathura: "These persons had a slight breathing exhilaration, their eyes were wide open, the colors of their bodies were changed, and they began to utter the holy name of Krsna. In this condition they gave up their material bodies." These symptoms are prior manifestations of death."

Srimad-Bhagavatam 10:11:48

Bhaktivedanta Book Trust. Excerpted from text and purport of HDG A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada.