Viṣṇu Purāṇa | Book 5 - Chapter 25

Chapter XXV

Balarāma finds wine in the hollow of a tree; becomes inebriated; commands the Yamunā to come to him, and on her refusal drags her out of her course: Lakṣmī gives him ornaments and a dress: he returns to Dvārakā, and marries Revatī.

WHILST the mighty Śeṣa, the upholder of the globe, was thus engaged in wandering amidst the forests with the herdsmen, in the disguise of a mortal--having rendered great services to earth, and still considering what more was to be achieved—

Varuṇa, in order to provide for his recreation, said to his wife Vāruṇī (the goddess of wine):

"Thou, Madirā, art ever acceptable to the powerful Ananta; go therefore, auspicious and kind goddess, and promote his enjoyments."

Obeying these commands, Vāruṇī went and established herself in the hollow of a Kadamba tree in the woods of Vrindāvana.

Baladeva, roaming about, came there, and smelling the pleasant fragrance of liquor, resumed his ancient passion for strong drink:

The holder of the ploughshare observing the vinous drops distilling from the Kadamba tree, was much delighted, and gathered and quaffed them along with the herdsmen and the Gopīs, whilst those who were skilful with voice and lute celebrated him in their songs.

Being inebriated with the wine, and the drops of perspiration standing like pearls upon his limbs, he called out, not knowing what he said:

"Come hither, Yamunā river, I want to bathe."

The river, disregarding the words of a drunken man, came not at his bidding: on which Rāma in a rage took up his ploughshare, which he plunged into her bank, and dragged her to him, calling out:

"Will you not come, you jade? Will you not come? Now go where you please (if you can)."

Thus saying, he compelled the dark river to quit its ordinary course, and follow him whithersoever he wandered through the wood.

Assuming a mortal figure, the Yamunā, with distracted looks, approached Balabhadra, and entreated him to pardon her, and let her go: but he replied:

"I will drag you with my ploughshare in a thousand directions, since you contemn my prowess and strength."

At last, however, appeased by her reiterated prayers, he let her go, after she had watered all the country.

When he had bathed, the goddess of beauty, Lakṣmī, came and gave him a beautiful lotus to place in one ear, and an earring for the other; a fresh necklace of lotus flowers, sent by Varuṇa; and garments of a dark blue colour, as costly as the wealth of the ocean:

and thus decorated with a lotus in one ear, a ring in the other, dressed in blue garments, and wearing a garland, Balarāma appeared united with loveliness.

Thus decorated, Rāma sported two months in Vraja, and then returned to Dvārakā, where he married Revatī, the daughter of king Raivata, by whom he had two sons, Niṣadha and Ulmuka.