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Vyasa is born to Satyavati

Satyavati grew up to be a beautiful maiden. But, being born of a fish, she had the repulsive smell of fish emanating from her. No effort on her part could rid her of this smell. Being a dutiful daughter, she assisted her father by plying a boat in the River Yamuna.
The sage Parasar, who had great mystic powers, was one day being ferried across the river by Satyavati. He was captivated by her beauty and told her of his desire for her. Satyavati pleaded that she wanted to remain a maiden. Parasar persisted and finally won her consent by giving her two boons.
Parasar’s first boon was that Satyavati would remain a maiden, even after union with him. The second boon was that the offensive odour she carried would disappear and, instead, she would smell of perfume. The second boon benefited Satyavati so much that she began to smell of flowers. She was transformed from Matsyagandha (she who smelt of fish) to Yojanagandha (she whose fragrance spread to a ‘yojana’ or nine miles).
On the boat, to avoid being seen by the rishis on either bank, Parasar caused a fog to occur. As soon as the sage left her, Sayavati conceived. By Parasar’s grace she gave birth to a male child immediately in an island in the river. Since the child had a dark complexion Satyavati named him Krishna. Since he was born in an island, Dwaipayana, or island-born, was added to his name. Krishna attained maturity as soon as he was born, again thanks to the mystical powers of his father. He was, after he grew up, to become proficient in scriptures and to earn the name Veda Vyasa for his elaboration of the Vedas. He left his mother to seek knowledge after assuring her that he would return to her side whenever she called him in her mind. For the present we shall leave Satyavati to ply her trade and turn to Santanu.

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