There is a story that Vasishtha bound himself hand and foot with a strong rope and jumped into a mountain river swollen with rain. The river refused to kill him, and, loosening his bonds, cast him unbound upon its banks. From this, the river was given the name ‘Vipasha’. We call this river the Beas today.

Which source is this story mentioned in? I've heard it's in Mahabharata or Vishnu Purana but unable to find where exactly it is located. Please give chapter number so I can also read the original.

1 Answer 1


It's from Mahabharata -

"Beholding his asylum bereft of his children, the Muni afflicted with great grief left it again. And in course of his wandering he saw, O Partha, a river swollen with the waters of the rainy season, sweeping away numberless trees and plants that had grown on its margin. Beholding this, O you of Kuru’s race, the distressed Muni thinking that he would certainly be drowned if he fell into the waters of that river, he tied himself strongly with several cords and flung himself, under the influence of grief, into the current of that mighty stream. But, O slayer of foes, that stream soon cut those cords and cast the Rishi ashore. And the Rishi rose from the bank, freed from the cords with which he had tied himself. And because his cords were thus broken off by the violence of the current, the Rishi called the stream by the name of Vipasa (the cord-breaker)."

Section CLXXIX, Caitraratha Parva, Mahabharata

  • Thanks!! Just what I was looking for!
    – covfefe
    Commented Dec 23, 2023 at 5:32

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