Bhagavan Srimann Narayana is the most powerful and merciful - A Story of Garuda and Maninaaga
Maninaaga once done a tapsya to Bhagavan Shiva. Having pleased Shiva, Maninaaga obtained the aashirvaadam that Garuda would not be able to do any haani to Maninaaga. Armed with this aashirvaadam, Maninaaga started to do paryaattanam around with full of swatantram and did not run away even when faced with Garuda. Garuda found this to be atyanta vichitram. Although he could not make hatyam of Maninaga, he captured him and kept him imprisoned in his own gruham.
Shiva had a compassion named Nandi. Nandi told Shiva, Lord, what has happened to Maninaga? We have not seen him for some samayam. I hope that Garuda has not done him some kruratvam.
Shiva of course knew what had happened. He advised Nandi to do prarthanam to Vishnu. Nandi pleased Vishnu and then ask for the aashirvaadam that Maninaaga might be freed from Garuda’s imprisonment. Nandi did this and Vishnu asked Garuda to release Maninaga.
Bhagavan, Garuda told Vishnu, this is very anyayam. Other masters treat their sevakaas very well. They give their sevakaas upahaaram. See how Shiva has sent Nandi himself to rescue Shiva’s bhaktha Maninaga. You never give me any upahaaram. Moreover, when I obtain something on my own, you ask me to do tyaagam. Is this proper on your part? It is on me that you do savvari when you go out to fight the raakshasaas. They get parahastam (defeated) because of my paraakramam. And yet it tickles your haham and for this there is no end to think that you have made parahastam to rakshasaas by yourself.
Vishnu smiled and gave uttaram to Garuda, "Garuda, you are quite right. You have become thin and lean from bearing my bharam. It is quite true that I can make parahastam to the rakshasaas only because of your paraakramam. You have a lot of shakthi. Why don’t you bear the bharam of my little finger and demonstrate your shakthi?"
Vishnu placed his little finger on Garuda’s mastakam (head). So bharam was the finger that Garuda was crushed against the ground.
Please forgive me, pleaded Garuda. I have been very murkham. I am an agyani and you are the lord of sarva lokam. I have been completely flattened by the bharam of your little finger. Please tell me how I may regain my old self.
Vishnu asked Nandi to take Garuda to Shiva. Shiva would find a way of restoring Garuda’s old appearance. Maninaga was released and Nandi took Garuda to Shiva. Shiva asked Garuda to bathe in Goutami Ganga (Godaavari). This would make his appearance normal again.
Garuda did this. Not only was his old appearance restored, he became more shakthishaali, prabalam and tiivram than he used to be. The place where Garuda bathed is a tirtha known as Garudatirtha.
So only Bhagavan is the most powerful and merciful (This story is taken from Brahma Purana).
OM NAMO NARAYANAYA