"King Sala Visits Kālayāvana", Folio from a Harivamsa
The legend goes like this: Jarasandha, Kansa's father-in-law, and the ruler of Magadha attacks Mathura eighteen times but is beaten by Krishna everytime. Jarasandha unable to defeat Krishna on his own made an alliance with Kalyavana. Kalyavana was a powerful Yavana warrior who was up until now undefeated in wars and combat.
Krishna, thinking that by a struggle with two foes at once the people would be exhausted, provided a new city, so strong that even women could protect it, to which he conducted the inhabitants of Mathura. Kalayavana attacked Mathura with an army of 3 million greeks/yavanas. Kalayavana realizing that the yavanas greatly outnumbered all the yadavas decided to challenge Krishna for a duel. Krishna strategically fled the battlefield. Shri Krishna lured Kalayavana into the cave where the great king of Treta yuga, Muchukunda, one of the forefathers of Lord Shri Rama was in a deep slumber of thousands of years after helping devas in an epic war with asuras.
Contemplating an absolutely undisturbed sleep he was given a boon by Lord Indra that anyone who dared to disturb his sleep would get burnt to ashes immediately. Fast forward to Dwapara yuga, in the darkness deep inside the cave, Krishna covered Muchkunda with his shawl. Kalayavan assuming him to be Krishna kicked him, thus disturbing his sleep and burning into ashes. And then Muchukunda was delighted to see Lord Shri Krishna there, who was none other than Lord Vishnu. Sri Krishna advises him to perform Tapas to cleanse the accumulated sins to attain Moksha (liberation). After meeting with lord, Muchukunda sets out of the cave. Muchukunda then goes north to Gandamadana Mountain and from there to Badrikashrama for doing penance and finally achieves liberation, the Moksha.
After knowing the fate of their king the Yavana armies fled to Yavana kingdom, thus Krishna saved Dwarka from mass-destruction. Even though he had to flee the battlefield once again.
- Sister Nivedita & Ananda K. Coomaraswamy: Myths and Legends of the Hindus and Bhuddhists, Kolkata, 2001 ISBN 81-7505-197-3
- Dowson's Classical Dictionary of Hindu mythology
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