Bhagavatam - Tenth Skandha , Chapter 56-57

Story of Syamantakmani


Having offended Lord Krishna Satrajit offered his own daughter along with the jewel Shyamantaka , personally striving to please him.



Suka Deva Continued

 Oh King! , Having offended Lord Krishna, personally striving to please him, Satrajit offered his own daughter along with the jewel Shyamantaka.

Raja Parikshit asked, “O Brahman, what did Satrajit do to offend Lord Krishna? Where did he get Shyamantaka Mani and why did he give his daughter to the Supreme Lord?”

Suka Deva continued.

“Oh King I will now narrate the story of Satrajit and the Syamantakamani “.

“Satrajit was a devotee of the Sun God. Very pleased the Sun God gave the Syamantakamani a jewel to Satrajit. Wearing the Syamantakamani one day Satrajit entered Dwaraka. Because of the brilliance of the jewel, the people could not see Satrajit and assumed that Sun God himself came to Dwaraka. They then went to tell Lord Krishna. ” Obeisance unto you Oh Narayana, o holder of the Conch, O Govinda, O cherished descendant of Yadus. The sun God has come to see you, blinding all with his brilliance. Most certainly the Devas in all the three worlds seek you out, knowing that you have hidden yourself in Yadu dynasty. Thus the unborn Sun God too has come to see you. “

Hearing these childish words, smiling broadly Krishna said, “This is not Sun god, but Satrajit wearing the Syamantakamani given by Sun God.”

There after Satrajit went to his home, and with festival rituals had the Syamantakamani installed in the temple room of the house. Daily the jewel would produce eight loads of gold. Where it is present and properly worshipped, there would be no famine, untimely deaths, catastrophes, snakes, mental disorders, diseases etc.

On one occasion Lord Krishna requested that this jewel be given to Ugrasena, the Yadu King. Greedy for wealth, Satrajit did not give, not even considering the request coming from the Supreme Lord.

Once Satrajit's brother Prasena wearing the jewel went to forest for hunting on his horse. Prasena along with his horse was killed by a lion. The lion took the jewel and entered a cave. There he was killed by Jambavan who took the jewel and gave it to his daughter Jambavati. Not finding Prasena, Satrajit became very anxious. He said, “Krishna probably killed my brother who went to forest wearing the jewel.” This was heard and whispered to one another and the message spread like wild fire. When Lord Krishna heard this infamy, in order to clean his reputation Krishna set out along with a few citizen of Dwaraka to follow the path of Prasena. In the course of their search, they found Prasena and his horse both killed by a Lion. Later they found the Lion killed by Jambavan. They then came to the cave of Jambavan.

Lord Krishna entered the cave alone, leaving the people at the entrance. Then the Lord saw the Syamantakamani as a plaything in the hands of a child. As he approached the child's nurse being afraid cried out and Jambavan came running. Unaware of the Lords true disposition, assuming him to be a normal human form, Jambavan began fighting with the Lord. The fight went on for twenty eight days. With the strength of his body diminished by the blows of the Lord , astonished at the strength of the stranger and realizing him not to be a stranger , Jambavan said , “ I know now that you are the life of all beings , You are the Vishnu , the originator of everything , you are the Supreme Lord. You are the creator , and you are also part everything that is created .You are the Time that moves everything .You are the one who built the great bridge to Lanka , you are the one who burnt the Lanka, you are the one whose arrows severed the heads of Ravana. “

O King! Lord Krishna then addressed Jambavan , the King of bears who understood the truth . He touched him with his hand to relive him of the pains and spoke to him.

“ O King of Bears !, in order to clear myself of false and defaming charge in connection with Syamantakamani I happened to come to this cave.” On hearing the story of the Syamantakamani, Jambavan readily gave that jewel. He also gave the jewel of his heart, his daughter Jambavati to Krishna in marriage.

In the meanwhile, the people accompanying Krishna left at the entrance of the cave waited outside for twelve days. Seeing that Krishna has not returned, they returned home in grief on the thirteenth day. Devaki, Vasudeva and Rukmini, hearing that Krishna has not come back too were plunged into deep sorrow. The inhabitants of Dwaraka too started cursing Satrajit in their sorrow. They began to pray for Durga for the safe return of Krishna. When Krishna returned along with a bride, it was as though the prayers of all were answered. Seeing him with Syamantakamani and a new wife everybody in Dwaraka rejoiced.

Lord Krishna had Satrajit summoned to the Kings assembly, where he returned the jewel after explaining the events relating to the disappearance of the jewel. Satrajit received the jewel, with a great sense of shame and went home.

Brooding over the incident Satrajit thought about ways of erasing his guilt, and winning the favor of Lord Krishna. He thought “What should I do for my welfare? How can I stop people from cursing me as a shortsighted and greedy man that I am? I shall give my daughter a jewel among men to Lord Krishna along with the Syamantakamani. This is the best way of reconciliation. Resolving thus within himself, he went with his daughter Satyabhama and offered them to Krishna.

The Lord then married Satyabhama , who is possessed of all noble qualities required As for the Syamantakamani Jewel , the supreme Lord said ,” We do not desire the Jewel oh King . Let it remain with Sun Gods devotee, then even we will be benefited “.

Suka Deva Continued:

Those were the times when the tides of events touched several shores. On the Hastinapura front where Krishna had earlier sent Akrura, to check on the welfare of Pandavas, the news of the burning down of the palace where Pandavas lived and the suspected death of Pandavas meant Lord Krishna himself travel to Hastinapura.

In the absence of Krishna, succumbing to allure of Syamantakamani , Akrura and Kritavrama hatched a plot to steal the Jewel from Satrajit. They egged on Satadhanava, to whom Satrajit promised his daughter at one time, before giving her away to Krishna. They told Satadhanva, as Satrajit broke his promise, why not Satrajit go the way of his brother Prasena, who was killed by a Lion. Thus instigated, Satadhanva killed Satrajit and took away the jewel. Seeing the dead body of her father, preserving it in oil, Satyabhama then went to Hastinapura to appraise the Lord about his demise. Krishna then returned with Balaram and Satyabhama, and took steps to kill Satadhanva.

Satadhanva, realizing the danger to his life approached, Akrura and Kritavrama for saving his life. Both of them rebuffed Satadhanva. Satadhanva depositing the jewel with Akrura fled from Dwaraka. Rama and Krishna followed in pursuit. Reaching Mithila, Satadhanva‘s horse fell dead and he began to run on foot followed by angry Krishna. Finally Krishna caught up with him and cut off his head with his discuss. Then searching his garments not finding the jewel, Krishna told Balaram that Satadhanva has been slain in vain and the jewel is not to be found. Then Balaram said,” Satadhanva must have entrusted the jewel to somebody in Dwaraka. Let us enquire who it is”. Krishna went back to Dwaraka and told Satyabhama about the killing of Satadhanva. Then Krishna performed the last rites of Satrajit.

Akrura and Kritavarma who actually instigated Satadhanva were very much frightened to hear about the slaughter of Satadhanva and fled from Dwaraka. After Akrura's departure the people of Dwaraka went though many difficulties.

Some of the inhabitants began to connect the departure of Akrura with the onset of difficulties in Dwaraka. Hearing the views of elders and also to disprove the misgivings, Krishna called back Akrura to Dwaraka addressed him thus,” Akrura, It is already known to me that Satadhanva has deposited the Syamantakamani with you. Now that Satrajit is without any son, sons of his daughters will receive the inheritance. Nevertheless Oh Akrura, the Syamantakamani should remain with you, because no one else can keep it. My elder Brother does not believe that the jewel is not with me. Please show the jewel once. In this way everybody will be free of doubts.”

Thus shamed by Lord Krishna with pleasing words, Akrura brought the jewel and showed it to Krishna. After displaying the same to all and removing everybody doubts, Lord returned the jewel to Akrura.

O King this narration of the story of Syamantakamani, rich with its narrative removes sinful reactions and bestows all auspiciousness. Anyone who recites or remembers will drive away his own infamy and sins and attain peace.

In deed the infamy of stealing the Syamantakamani seem to stuck to Krishna because he has seen the moon of the fourth day Badhrapad month , which results in infamy unless they worship Ganesha the son of Goddess Parvati . The story is retold as part of the worship of Ganesha


O king! This narration rich with the prowess of the Bhagavan and Lord Vishnu removes the sinful reactions and bestows all auspiciousness. Anyone hears or remembers this narration; it will drive away his own infamy and attain peace