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The Killing of Kaṁsa

La mise à mort de Kaṁsa

After Kaṁsa’s wrestlers expressed their determination, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the killer of Madhu, confronted Cāṇūra, and Lord Balarāma, the son of Rohiṇī, confronted Muṣṭika. Kṛṣṇa and Cāṇūra and then Balarāma and Muṣṭika locked themselves hand to hand, leg to leg, and each began to press against the other with a view to coming out victorious. They joined palm to palm, calf to calf, head to head, chest to chest and began to strike each other. The fighting increased as they pushed each other from one place to another. One captured the other and threw him down on the ground, and another rushed from the back to the front of another and tried to overcome him with a hold. The fighting increased step by step. There was picking up, dragging and pushing, and then the legs and hands were locked together. All the arts of wrestling were perfectly exhibited by the parties as each tried his best to defeat his opponent.

Quand les lutteurs eurent exprimé leur détermination, le Seigneur Suprême, le Vainqueur de Madhu, affronta Cāṇūra, et Śrī Balarāma, Fils de Rohiṇī, Muṣṭika. Les quatre lutteurs se tenaient étroitement enserrés, main à main, jambe à jambe, chacun se pressant contre l’adversaire dans l’espoir de prendre le dessus. Paume contre paume, mollet contre mollet, tête contre tête, poitrine contre poitrine, chacun se mit à frapper son adversaire. Ils se poussaient et se repoussaient d’un endroit à un autre, et la lutte s’intensifiait. L’un saisissait son adversaire et le jetait au sol ; l’autre se ruait du dos au front de son adversaire et tentait de le dominer d’une prise. D’instant en instant, la violence, l’âpreté, augmentaient. On tombait, on se relevait, on se traînait, se poussait, s’étreignait jambe contre jambe, main contre main. Toutes les finesses de l’art de la lutte furent déployées par chacun, à la perfection.

But the audience in the wrestling arena was not very much satisfied because the combatants did not appear to be equally matched. They considered Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma to be mere boys before Cāṇūra and Muṣṭika, who were the strongest wrestlers, as solid as stone. Being compassionate and favoring Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma, the many ladies in the audience began to talk as follows: “Dear friends, there is injustice here.” Another said, “Even in front of the king this wrestling is going on between incompatible sides.” The ladies had lost their sense of enjoyment. They could not encourage the fighting between the strong and the weak. “Muṣṭika and Cāṇūra are just like thunderbolts, as strong as great mountains, and Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma are two delicate boys of very tender age. The principle of justice has already left this assembly. Persons who are aware of the civilized principles of justice will not remain to watch this unfair match. Those taking part in watching this wrestling match are not very much enlightened; therefore whether they speak or remain silent, they are being subjected to the reactions of sinful activities.”

Cependant, les spectateurs s’irritaient de l’inégalité apparente des combattants. De simples garçons devant ces hommes énormes, massifs comme des blocs de pierre, qu’étaient les lutteurs Cāṇūra et Muṣṭika ! Les faveurs du public allaient à Kṛṣṇa et Balarāma, on exprimait tout haut sa sympathie : « Mes amis, ce combat est un danger. » Ou encore : « Comment un tel tournoi, opposant des lutteurs de puissance inégale, peut-il se poursuivre, même devant le roi ! » La foule n’éprouvait plus aucun plaisir. Comment encourager le combat du fort contre le faible ? Un autre dit : « Muṣṭika et Cāṇūra sont vifs comme la foudre, puissants comme de hautes montagnes, et Kṛṣṇa et Balarāma ne sont que deux frêles garçons d’âge tendre. La justice a déserté ces lieux. Ceux qui la vénèrent ne resteront pas plus longtemps à regarder un combat déloyal. Et ceux qui resteront certes ne mériteront pas qu’on les appelle des êtres éclairés ; qu’ils parlent ou se taisent, ils ne font qu’obéir aux conséquences de leurs actes coupables. »

“But my dear friends,” another lady in the assembly spoke out, “just look at the face of Kṛṣṇa. There are drops of perspiration on His face from chasing His enemy, and His face appears like a lotus flower with drops of water.”

Des exclamations fusaient : « Mes amis, regardez donc le visage de Kṛṣṇa. Dans la poursuite, son visage s’est couvert de gouttes de sueur qui rappellent les gouttes d’eau qui se posent sur la fleur de lotus.

Another lady said, “Don’t you see how the face of Lord Balarāma has turned especially beautiful? There is a reddish hue on His white face because He is engaged in a strenuous wrestling match with Muṣṭika.”

Et avez-vous vu quelle beauté prend le visage de Śrī Balarāma ? Sa lutte brûlante contre Muṣṭika teinte de rouge son blanc visage. »

Another lady in the assembly addressed her friend, “Dear friend, just imagine how fortunate is the land of Vṛndāvana, where the Supreme Personality of Godhead Himself is present, always decorated with flower garlands and engaged in tending cows along with His brother, Lord Balarāma. He is always accompanied by His cowherd boyfriends, and He plays His transcendental flute. The residents of Vṛndāvana are fortunate to be able to constantly see the lotus feet of Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma, which are worshiped by great demigods like Lord Śiva and by the goddess of fortune. We cannot estimate how many pious activities were executed by the damsels of Vrajabhūmi so that they were able to enjoy the Supreme Personality of Godhead by looking upon the unparalleled beauty of His transcendental body. The beauty of the Lord is beyond compare. No one is higher than or equal to Him in beauty of complexion or bodily luster. Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma are the reservoir of all kinds of opulence – namely wealth, strength, beauty, fame, knowledge and renunciation. The gopīs are so fortunate that they can see and think of Kṛṣṇa twenty-four hours a day, beginning from their milking the cows or husking the paddy or churning the butter in the morning. While engaged in cleaning their houses and washing their floors, they are always absorbed in thought of Kṛṣṇa.”

Les dames de l’assemblée parlaient ainsi : « Chères amies, imaginez la fortune de la terre de Vṛndāvana, où le Seigneur Suprême réside en Personne, toujours paré de guirlandes de fleurs, gardant les vaches en compagnie de Son Frère Śrī Balarāma. Toujours entouré de Ses amis les pâtres, Il joue de Sa flûte sublime, spirituelle et absolue. Quel bonheur ont les habitants de Vṛndāvana qui voient sans cesse les pieds pareils-au-lotus de Kṛṣṇa et de Balarāma, qu’adorent de grands devas comme Śiva et Brahmā, ainsi que la déesse de la fortune. Combien d’actes vertueux ont dû accomplir les demoiselles de Vrajabhūmi, qu’elles puissent ainsi jouir de la compagnie de Dieu, la Personne Suprême, et contempler la beauté sans pareille de Son Corps absolu ! La beauté du Seigneur est sans exemple. Nul ne Le dépasse en beauté de teint ou en éclat corporel, ni ne L’égale. Kṛṣṇa et Balarāma constituent le Réservoir de toutes excellences : beauté, richesse, puissance, renommée, savoir et renoncement. Immense est la bonne fortune des gopīs, puisqu’elles peuvent voir Kṛṣṇa et penser à Lui tout au long du jour et de la nuit, depuis le matin, où elles traient les vaches, battent le riz, barattent le beurre. Puis elles nettoient leurs demeures et en lavent le sol ; et toujours, elles s’absorbent dans la pensée de Kṛṣṇa. »

The gopīs give a perfect example of how one can execute Kṛṣṇa consciousness even while performing various types of material engagements. By constantly being absorbed in the thought of Kṛṣṇa, one cannot be affected by the contamination of material activities. The gopīs, therefore, are perfectly in trance, samādhi, the highest perfectional stage of mystic power. In the Bhagavad-gītā, it is confirmed that one who is constantly thinking of Kṛṣṇa is a first-class yogī among all kinds of yogīs. “My dear friends,” one lady told another, “we must accept the activities of the gopīs to be the highest form of piety; otherwise, how could they have achieved the opportunity of seeing Kṛṣṇa both morning and evening – in the morning when He goes to the pasturing ground with His cows and cowherd boyfriends, and in the evening when He returns with them, playing on His flute and smiling very brilliantly?”

Les gopīs montrent un exemple parfait de pratique de la conscience de Kṛṣṇa même lorsqu’engagé dans diverses activités matérielles. Celui qui s’absorbe constamment dans la pensée de Kṛṣṇa ne peut être affecté par la souillure des actes matériels. Ainsi, les gopīs connaissent le samādhi parfait, le plus haut niveau, la plus haute perfection des pouvoirs surnaturels. Dans la Bhagavad-gītā, il est confirmé que celui qui pense constamment à Kṛṣṇa est le plus haut de tous les yogīs.

On entendait encore dans les tribunes des dames : « Amies, nous devons accepter les activités des gopīs comme la plus haute forme de religion ; sinon, comment auraient-elles pu gagner l’occasion de voir Kṛṣṇa matin et soir, lorsqu’Il part pour les pâturages avec Ses vaches et Ses compagnons et lorsqu’Il en revient ? Pour elles, Le voir jouer de Sa flûte et sourire avec éclat est un bonheur quotidien. »

When Lord Kṛṣṇa, the Supersoul of every living being, understood that the ladies in the assembly were anxious for Him, He decided not to continue wrestling but to kill the wrestlers immediately. The parents of Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma, namely Nanda Mahārāja, Yaśodā, Vasudeva and Devakī, were also very anxious because they did not know the unlimited strength of their children. Lord Balarāma was fighting with the wrestler Muṣṭika in the same way that Kṛṣṇa, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, was fighting and wrestling with Cāṇūra. Lord Kṛṣṇa appeared to be cruel to Cāṇūra, and He immediately struck him thrice with His fist. The great wrestler was jolted, to the astonishment of the audience. Cāṇūra then took his last chance and attacked Kṛṣṇa, just as one hawk swoops upon another. Folding his two hands, he began to strike the chest of Kṛṣṇa, but Lord Kṛṣṇa was not even slightly disturbed, any more than an elephant is when hit by a flower garland. Kṛṣṇa quickly caught the two hands of Cāṇūra and began to wheel him around, and simply by this centrifugal action, Cāṇūra lost his life. Kṛṣṇa then threw him to the ground. Cāṇūra fell just like the flag of Indra, and all his nicely fashioned ornaments were scattered hither and thither.

Lorsque Śrī Kṛṣṇa, l’Âme Suprême habitant tous les êtres, comprit l’inquiétude qui assaillait les dames de Mathurā, Il décida de mettre fin à la lutte en tuant sur-le-champ les lutteurs. Grande était aussi l’angoisse de Nanda et Yaśodā, Vasudeva et Devakī, Ses parents, qui ignoraient la puissance sans mesure de leur Fils. De même que Kṛṣṇa luttait contre Cāṇūra, Śrī Balarāma affrontait Son propre adversaire, Muṣṭika. Śrī Kṛṣṇa sembla cruel : sans plus attendre, Il frappa trois fois Cāṇūra de Son poing. À la surprise générale, le champion parut violemment étourdi. Tentant son ultime chance, il fondit sur Kṛṣṇa comme un faucon sur un autre. Les poings réunis, il se mit à frapper Kṛṣṇa sur la poitrine, mais le Seigneur n’en fut pas davantage troublé qu’un éléphant frappé avec une guirlande de fleurs. Sans lui laisser de répit, Kṛṣṇa étreignit les deux mains de Cāṇūra, le souleva de terre, et commença à le faire tournoyer ; ce simple mouvement lui fit perdre la vie. Alors Kṛṣṇa jeta le cadavre sur le sol. Le lutteur mort s’affala comme l’étendard du roi Indra, et toutes ses belles parures furent éparpillées dans la poussière.

Muṣṭika also struck Balarāma, and Balarāma returned the stroke with great force. Muṣṭika began to tremble and vomit blood. Distressed, he gave up his vital force and fell down just as a tree falls down in a hurricane.

Muṣṭika, de son côté, frappa lui aussi Balarāma ; mais l’Aîné de Kṛṣṇa retourna contre lui la force de son attaque. Muṣṭika fut pris d’un tremblement ; sang et vomissures coulèrent de sa bouche. En état de détresse, il fut abandonné de sa force vitale et tomba tel un arbre déraciné par l’ouragan.

After the two wrestlers were killed, a wrestler named Kūṭa came forward. Lord Balarāma immediately caught him in His left hand and killed him nonchalantly. A wrestler of the name Śala came forward, and Kṛṣṇa immediately cracked his head with a kick. A wrestler named Tośala came forward and was killed in the same way. Thus all the great wrestlers were killed by Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma, and the remaining wrestlers fled from the assembly out of fear for their lives. All the cowherd boyfriends of Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma approached Them and congratulated Them with great pleasure. While trumpets resounded and drums were beaten, the leg bells on the feet of Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma tinkled.

Les deux lutteurs mis à mort, un autre, Kūṭa, prit place dans l’arène. Balarāma, de Sa main gauche, le saisit et le tua nonchalamment. Śala s’avance, Kṛṣṇa lui brise la tête d’un coup de pied. Tośala subit le même sort. Les plus grands jouteurs ont tous trouvé la mort entre les mains de Kṛṣṇa et de Balarāma ; ceux qui restent, craignant pour leur vie, prennent la fuite. Alors, les pâtres, les amis de Kṛṣṇa et de Balarāma, pleins de joie, s’approchèrent d’Eux pour Les féliciter. Les tambours battaient, la rumeur publique, commentant la victoire des deux Frères, S’enflait. Les clochettes aux chevilles de Kṛṣṇa et de Balarāma tintaient.

All the people gathered there began to clap in great ecstasy, and no one could estimate the bounds of their pleasure. The brāhmaṇas present began to praise Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma ecstatically. Only Kaṁsa was morose; he neither clapped nor offered benediction to Kṛṣṇa. Kaṁsa resented that the trumpets and drums should be played for Kṛṣṇa’s victory, and he was very sorry that the wrestlers had been killed and had fled the assembly. He therefore immediately ordered the band to stop playing and addressed his men as follows: “I order that these two sons of Vasudeva be immediately driven out of Mathurā. The cowherd boys who have come with Them should be plundered and all their riches taken away. Nanda Mahārāja should immediately be arrested and killed for his cunning behavior, and that rascal Vasudeva should also be killed without delay. Also my father, Ugrasena, who has always supported my enemies against my will, should be killed.”

Toute l’assemblée, en extase, les applaudit ; comment exprimer le plaisir que tous ressentaient ? Les brāhmaṇas présents firent en extase l’éloge de Kṛṣṇa et de Balarāma. Seul Kaṁsa restait morose, n’applaudit point, non plus qu’il offrit à Kṛṣṇa sa bénédiction. Les tambours battant la victoire du Seigneur l’irritaient. Il s’attristait de la défaite ou de la fuite de ses lutteurs. Il donna l’ordre qu’on cesse de battre le tambour et s’adressa aux siens en ces termes : « Mon ordre est que ces deux Fils de Vasudeva soient chassés sans tarder hors de Mathurā. Les pâtres venus avec Eux seront sur-le-champ dépouillés de tous leurs biens. Qu’on arrête sans délai et qu’on mette à mort Nanda Mahārāja pour sa duplicité, qu’on agisse de même avec le traître Vasudeva et avec Ugrasena, mon père, qui toujours s’est rangé avec mes ennemis et a contrecarré mes desseins ! »

When Kaṁsa spoke in this way, Lord Kṛṣṇa became very angry with him, and within a second He jumped onto the high dais of King Kaṁsa. Kaṁsa was prepared for Kṛṣṇa’s attack, for he knew from the beginning that Kṛṣṇa was to be the supreme cause of his death. Kaṁsa immediately unsheathed his sword and prepared to answer the challenge of Kṛṣṇa with sword and shield. As Kaṁsa wielded his sword up and down, hither and thither, Lord Kṛṣṇa, the supreme powerful Lord, caught hold of him with great force. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is the shelter of the complete creation and from whose lotus navel the whole creation is manifested, immediately knocked the crown from the head of Kaṁsa and grabbed his long hair in His hand. He then dragged Kaṁsa from his seat to the wrestling dais and threw him down. Then Kṛṣṇa at once straddled his chest and began to strike him over and over again. Simply from the strokes of Kṛṣṇa’s fist, Kaṁsa lost his vital force.

En entendant ces ordres, Śrī Kṛṣṇa ressentit contre Kaṁsa une grande colère. D’un bond, Il sauta par-dessus les gardes du roi. Kaṁsa s’était préparé à une telle attaque ; depuis le commencement, il savait que Kṛṣṇa serait sa mort. Il dégaina, et se tint prêt à répondre au défi du Seigneur avec son sabre et son bouclier. Il fit tournoyer sa lame, mais ne put empêcher le Seigneur tout-puissant, Śrī Kṛṣṇa, de S’emparer de lui. Dieu, la Personne Suprême, Refuge de la création tout entière, laquelle sort de Son nombril pareil-au-lotus, fit d’un coup choir de la tête du roi sa couronne, et empoigna ses longs cheveux. Puis Il traîna Kaṁsa de son siège à l’aire de lutte et le jeta au sol. Se tenant à califourchon sur sa poitrine, Il le frappa de Son poing à maintes reprises, jusqu’à ce que sa force vitale le quitte.

To assure His parents that Kaṁsa was dead, Lord Kṛṣṇa dragged him just as a lion drags an elephant after killing it. When people saw this, there was a great roaring sound from all sides as some spectators expressed their jubilation and others cried in lamentation. From the day Kaṁsa had heard he would be killed by the eighth son of Devakī, he was always thinking of Kṛṣṇa with His wheel in hand, and because he was very much afraid of his death, he was thinking of Kṛṣṇa in that form twenty-four hours a day, without stopping – even while eating, while walking and while breathing – and naturally he got the blessing of liberation. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is stated, sadā tad-bhāva-bhāvitaḥ: a person gets his next life according to the thoughts in which he is always absorbed. Kaṁsa was thinking of Kṛṣṇa with His wheel, which means Nārāyaṇa, who holds a wheel, conch shell, lotus flower and club.

Pour que Ses parents soient sûrs de la mort de Kaṁsa, Śrī Kṛṣṇa le traîna comme un lion traîne l’éléphant qu’il vient de tuer. À cette vue, de tous côtés s’éleva un grand tumulte : certains exprimaient leur joie, d’autres criaient et se lamentaient. Mais du jour où il avait entendu la prophétie de sa mort causée par le huitième fils de Devakī, Kaṁsa n’avait cessé de penser à Kṛṣṇa, jour et nuit, sans s’interrompre – même lorsqu’il mangeait, marchait, respirait ; il obtint donc tout naturellement la bénédiction de la libération. La Bhagavad-gītā enseigne : sadā tad-bhāva-bhāvitaḥ, ce sont les pensées dans lesquelles l’être s’absorbe constamment qui déterminent sa vie future. Kaṁsa pensait à Kṛṣṇa armé de Son disque, c’est-à-dire à Nārāyaṇa, qui tient le disque, la conque, la fleur de lotus et la masse.

According to the opinion of authorities, Kaṁsa attained sārūpya-mukti after death; that is to say, he attained the same form as Nārāyaṇa (Viṣṇu). On the Vaikuṇṭha planets all the inhabitants have the same bodily features as Nārāyaṇa. After his death, Kaṁsa attained liberation and was promoted to Vaikuṇṭhaloka. From this instance we can understand that even a person who thinks of the Supreme Personality of Godhead as an enemy gets liberation or a place in a Vaikuṇṭha planet, so what to speak of the pure devotees, who are always absorbed in favorable thoughts of Kṛṣṇa? Even an enemy killed by Kṛṣṇa gets liberation and is placed in the impersonal brahma-jyotir. Since the Supreme Personality of Godhead is all-good, anyone thinking of Him, either as an enemy or as a friend, gets liberation. But the liberation of the devotee and the liberation of the enemy are not the same. The enemy generally gets the liberation of sāyujya, and sometimes he gets sārūpya liberation.

Selon l’opinion d’autorités en la matière, Kaṁsa obtint après sa mort la sārūpya-mukti : il fut doté d’une forme semblable à celle de Nārāyaṇa, ou Viṣṇu. Sur les planètes Vaikuṇṭhas, tous les habitants ont les mêmes traits corporels que Nārāyaṇa. Après sa mort, Kaṁsa obtint donc la libération et fut promu à Vaikuṇṭhaloka. Son exemple nous donne de comprendre que même l’ennemi du Seigneur Suprême, s’il garde sa pensée sur Lui, obtient la libération et gagne de vivre sur une planète Vaikuṇṭha ; que dire alors du pur bhakta, toujours absorbé en des pensées d’amour pour Kṛṣṇa ? Tué par la main de Kṛṣṇa, Son ennemi même obtient la libération et se voit promu au niveau du brahmajyotir impersonnel. Parce que le Seigneur Suprême est toute bonté, quiconque, ennemi ou ami, pense à Lui obtient la libération. Cependant, pas sous la même forme. L’ennemi n’obtient le plus souvent que la libération sāyujya, ou parfois sārūpya.

Kaṁsa had eight brothers, headed by Kaṅka, all of them younger than he, and when they learned that their elder brother had been killed, they combined together and rushed toward Kṛṣṇa in great anger to kill Him. Kaṁsa and his brothers were all Kṛṣṇa’s maternal uncles, brothers of Kṛṣṇa’s mother, Devakī. When Kṛṣṇa killed Kaṁsa He killed His maternal uncle, which is against the regulations of Vedic injunctions. Although Kṛṣṇa is independent of all Vedic injunctions, He violates the Vedic injunctions only in inevitable cases. Kaṁsa could not be killed by anyone but Kṛṣṇa; therefore Kṛṣṇa was obliged to kill him. But as far as Kaṁsa’s eight brothers were concerned, Balarāma took charge of killing them. Balarāma’s mother, Rohiṇī, although the wife of Vasudeva, was not the sister of Kaṁsa; therefore Balarāma took charge of killing all of Kaṁsa’s eight brothers. He immediately took up an available weapon (most probably the elephant’s tusk which He carried) and killed the eight brothers one after another, just as a lion kills a flock of deer. Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma thus verified the statement that the Supreme Personality of Godhead appears in order to give protection to the pious and to kill the impious demons, who are always enemies of the demigods.

Kaṁsa avait huit frères, dont l’aîné se nommait Kaṅka. Lorsqu’ils apprirent la mort de leur aîné, ils se réunirent et, pleins de colère, se précipitèrent sur Kṛṣṇa, pour L’anéantir. Kaṁsa et ses frères étaient tous oncles maternels de Kṛṣṇa, frères de Devakī, Sa mère. En tuant Kaṁsa, Kṛṣṇa avait tué Son oncle maternel, et par là enfreint les règles védiques. Bien que Kṛṣṇa ne soit pas assujetti à ces règles, Il ne les viole que si toute alternative est impossible. Or, seul Kṛṣṇa pouvait mettre à mort Kaṁsa : nonobstant la parenté, Il accomplit donc Lui-même la tâche. Mais les huit frères périrent entre les mains de Balarāma, dont la mère, Rohiṇī, bien qu’épouse de Vasudeva, n’était pas la sœur de Kaṁsa. S’emparant aussitôt de la première arme qui Se trouva sous sa main (sans doute la défense d’éléphant qu’Il avait apportée avec Lui), un après l’autre Il les fit périr, tout comme un lion dévaste une troupe de cerfs. Ainsi, Kṛṣṇa et Balarāma confirmèrent-Ils que Dieu, la Personne Suprême, apparait en ce monde pour couvrir de Sa protection les vertueux et détruire les impies, les asuras, ennemis éternels des devas.

The demigods from the higher planetary systems showered flowers, congratulating Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma. Among the demigods were powerful personalities like Lord Brahmā and Lord Śiva, and all joined together in showing their jubilation over Kaṁsa’s death. There were beating of drums and showering of flowers from the heavenly planets, and the wives of the demigods danced in ecstasy.

Les devas des systèmes planétaires supérieurs lancèrent des pluies de fleurs pour féliciter Kṛṣṇa et Balarāma. Parmi eux, on trouvait de puissants personnages, comme Brahmā et Śiva. Tous les devas s’étaient rassemblés pour manifester leur grand bonheur de savoir Kaṁsa mort. On entendait venir des planètes édéniques le battement des tambours, et les fleurs pleuvaient. Les épouses des devas dansèrent en extase.

The wives of Kaṁsa and his eight brothers were aggrieved at the sudden death of their husbands, and all of them struck their foreheads and shed torrents of tears. Crying loudly and embracing the bodies of their husbands, which lay on the wrestling dais, the wives of Kaṁsa and his brothers lamented, addressing the dead bodies: “Our dear husbands, you are so kind and are the protectors of your dependents. Now, after your death, we are also dead, along with your homes and children. We no longer look auspicious. On account of your death, the auspicious functions to take place, such as the sacrifice of the bow, have all been spoiled. Our dear husbands, you treated persons ill who were faultless, and as a result you have been killed. This is inevitable because a person who torments an innocent person must be punished by the laws of nature. We know that Lord Kṛṣṇa is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. He is the supreme master and supreme enjoyer of everything; therefore, one who neglects His authority can never be happy, and ultimately, as you have, he meets death.”

Les épouses de Kaṁsa et de ses huit frères se frappaient le front et versaient des torrents de larmes. Gémissant avec force, elles étreignaient les corps de leurs époux ; s’adressant aux cadavres, elles se lamentaient en ces termes : « Ô chers époux, si grande fut votre bonté, vous nos protecteurs. Puisque vous avez quitté ce monde, nous voici comme mortes, et morts nos foyers et nos enfants. Nous avons perdu toute apparence de fortune. Puisque vous êtes morts, les fêtes de bon augure qui devaient avoir lieu, comme le sacrifice-de-l’arc, sont ruinées. Ô chers époux, vous avez maltraité des êtres sans tache, et c’est pourquoi vous avez dû trouver la mort. C’était là chose inévitable, car quiconque tourmente un innocent doit subir la peine que lui infligent les lois de la nature. Nous savons que Śrī Kṛṣṇa est Dieu, la Personne Suprême. Il est le Maître et le Bénéficiaire suprême ; quiconque néglige Son autorité ne pourra donc jamais connaître le bonheur, et pour finir, il lui faudra comme vous rencontrer la mort. »

Since Kṛṣṇa was kind and affectionate to His aunts, He solaced them as far as possible. The ritualistic ceremonies performed after death were then conducted under the personal supervision of Kṛṣṇa because He happened to be the nephew of all the dead princes. After finishing this business, Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma immediately released Their father and mother, Vasudeva and Devakī, who had been imprisoned by Kaṁsa. Kṛṣṇa and Balarāma fell at Their parents’ feet and offered them prayers. Vasudeva and Devakī had suffered so much trouble from Kaṁsa because Kṛṣṇa was their son. Devakī and Vasudeva were fully conscious of Kṛṣṇa’s exalted position as the Supreme Personality of Godhead; therefore, although Kṛṣṇa touched their feet and offered them obeisances and prayers, they did not embrace Him but simply stood up to hear the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Although Kṛṣṇa was born as their son, Vasudeva and Devakī were always conscious of His position.

Kṛṣṇa n’était que bonté et affection envers Ses tantes. Il entreprit donc de les consoler de Son mieux. Les cérémonies funèbres furent ensuite menées sous la direction personnelle de Kṛṣṇa, en tant que neveu de tous les princes défunts. Aussitôt après, Kṛṣṇa et Balarāma délivrèrent Leur père et Leur mère, Vasudeva et Devakī, emprisonnés par Kaṁsa. Kṛṣṇa et Balarāma tombèrent aux pieds de Leurs parents et leur offrirent des prières. Par leur Fils, Vasudeva et Devakī avaient dû grandement souffrir et connaître de nombreuses difficultés. Kaṁsa, en effet, ne les avait tant maltraités qu’à cause de Lui. Devakī et Vasudeva, pleinement conscients de la haute position de Kṛṣṇa, rien moins que Dieu, la Personne Suprême, ne Le serrèrent pas dans leurs bras, même quand Il eut touché leurs pieds et leur eut offert Son hommage et Ses prières : ils se tinrent simplement là, pour écouter Dieu, la Personne Suprême. Kṛṣṇa était né comme leur fils, mais Vasudeva et Devakī gardaient toujours conscience de Son Être véritable.

Thus ends the Bhaktivedanta purport of the forty-fourth chapter of Kṛṣṇa, “The Killing of Kaṁsa.”

Ainsi s’achèvent les enseignements de Bhaktivedanta pour le quarante-quatrième chapitre du Livre de Kṛṣṇa, intitulé: « La mise à mort de Kaṁsa ».