This chapter describes how Krsna broke the twin arjuna trees, from which Nalakuvara and Manigriva, the sons of Kuvera, then came out.
Nalakuvara and Manigriva were great devotees of Lord Siva, but because of material opulence they became so extravagant and senseless that one day they were enjoying with naked girls in a lake and shamelessly walking here and there. Suddenly Narada Muni passed by, but they were so maddened by their wealth and false prestige that even though they saw Narada Muni present, they remained naked and were not even ashamed. In other words, because of opulence and false prestige, they lost their sense of common decency. Of course, it is the nature of the material qualities that when one becomes very much opulent in terms of wealth and a prestigious position, one loses one’s sense of etiquette and does not care about anyone, even a sage like Narada Muni. For such bewildered persons (ahankara-vimudhatma), who especially deride devotees, the proper punishment is to be again stricken with poverty. The Vedic rules and regulations prescribe how to control the false sense of prestige by the practice of yama, niyama and so on (tapasa brahmacaryena samena ca damena ca [SB 6.1.13]). A poor man can be convinced very easily that the prestige of an opulent position in this material world is temporary, but a rich man cannot. Therefore Narada Muni set an example by cursing these two persons, Nalakuvara and Manigriva, to become dull and unconscious like trees. This was a fit punishment. But because Krsna is always merciful, even though they were punished they were fortunate enough to see the Supreme Personality of Godhead face to face. Therefore the punishment given by Vaisnavas is not at all punishment; rather, it is another kind of mercy. By the curse of the devarsi, Nalakuvara and Manigriva became twin arjuna trees and remained in the courtyard of mother Yasoda and Nanda Maharaja, waiting for the opportunity to see Krsna directly. Lord Krsna, by the desire of His devotee, uprooted these yamala-arjuna trees, and when Nalakuvara and Manigriva were thus delivered by Krsna after one hundred years of the devas, their old consciousness revived, and they offered Krsna prayers suitable to be offered by demigods. Having thus gotten the opportunity to see Krsna face to face, they understood how merciful Narada Muni was, and therefore they expressed their indebtedness to him and thanked him. Then, after circumambulating the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna, they departed for their respective abodes.

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