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XX. Krishna's Grace on Droupadi

Sage Vyasa continued, "Listen O king!"

"Droupadi was overwhelmed with amazement when she experienced the grace of Krishna who granted the boon of clothing to protect her honour; she shed profuse tears of gratitude and exclaimed in ecstasy, 'Krishna ! Krishna!' with such a rush of feeling and zeal that those present in the audience-hall were struck with fear. The shining splendour of her face made them suspect that she must be the veritable Goddess (Sakthi) who energises the universe."

"Meanwhile, Krishna manifested Himself in concrete form before your grandmother, Droupadi and said, 'Sister! Why are you troubled in mind? I have taken birth with the express purpose of destroying these evil men blinded by pride. I shall see that the glory and fame of the Pandavas are held high for the admiration of this world for generations to come. Console yourself.'"

"At this, she fell at the Lord's feet, washing it with her tears darkened by the collyrium in her eyes; the tresses of her long thick hair, unloosened by wicked hands, fell over His feet and covered them. She rolled on the ground round the feet."

"Her furious contentment and her angry excitement steeped the assembly of courtiers and warriors in astonishment. Krishna raised her up and placing His hand upon her head, He blessed her. 'Rise! Tie the hair into a knot. Await patiently the events that will happen in the days ahead. Go, join your companions in the inner apartments', He implored her. Hearing these words, Droupadi started like a serpent that has raised its hood. Her eyes shone through the veil of hair that covered her face; her glances were like flashes of lightning among the clouds."

"She stood in the centre of the assembly and turning on Krishna, she said in deliberate tones, 'Krishna! Cloth that gets torn can only be stitched; the rents cannot be mended otherwise. A virtuous bride can be given away only once. Curdled milk cannot be restored to its primal purity. The tusks of the elephant can never be withdrawn into the mouth, from out of which they came. Droupadi's tresses have been loosened, by the foul hands of these evil men. They can never be knotted again, as formerly, to mark the happiness of a wife.' At this, every one sat silent with bent head, overcome with the shame of the insult of the queen."