about the importance of Rudraksha
to the sages, Vyas said--- One who wears a Rudraksha rosary is supreme
among all human beings. The mere sight of such a holy man absolves
people of their sin. A Rudraksha bead bears features of a Linga and yoni
on it's surface. One should not wear a rudraksha on which above
mentioned features are absent. Similarly two joint beads should never be
worn. All the mantras become doubly powerful when chanted with the help
of rudraksha-rosary.During Satya-yuga, there lived a mighty demon named
Tripurasur. He had conquered the deities and was capable of moving in
the space. The deities sought help of Lord Shiva, who killed Tripurasur
by the sight of his third-eye. In the process, few drops of sweat,
emanating from Shiva's body fell down on the earth. These sweat drops
got transformed into a large Rudraksha-tree.
Amla is a very nutritious fruit and great religious significance has
been attached to it. Amla fruit is very dear to Lord Vishnu and its use
on the auspicious day of Ekadashi brings unmatched virtue. A person who
regularly eats amla enjoys a long life.The following tale adequately
describes the religious importance of amla --
Once upon a time, a chandala went into the forest for hunting. He hunted
many deer and birds. Feeling hungry, he saw an amla tree and climbed up
the tree. This way he satiated his hunger by eating sweet amla fruits.
Unfortumately while he was climbing down the tree, he fell down and
died.When the attendants of Yamaraj arrived to take back his soul, they
could not do so even after repeated attempts. The attendants of Yamaraj
became very surprised and went to the sages for clarification. The sages
revealed to the attendants that they could not go near the chandala's
dead body, because he had eaten amla just before his death.
Such is the glory of amla!
Once Kartikeya asked Lord Shiva about the holiest tree, which was
capable of giving salvation. Lord shiva replied---The Tulsi plant is
supreme among all the vegetations. She is very dear to lord Vishnu and
fulfill's all the desires of a man. Lord Krishna dwells near the place
where there is a Tulsi plant. Spirits and ghosts never dare to venture
near the Tulsi plant. If a man attaches a Tulsi leaf to his Shikha at
the time of his death, he is liberated from all his sins. One who
worships Lord Vishnu by offering Tulsi-leaves attains salvation.
Once, while describing about the
importance of Surya's worship to Vaishampayan, Sage Vyas narrated the
following tale ---
There lived a king named Bhadreshwar. He ruled over Madhyadesh. Once his
left hand was infected with leprosy. Bhadreshwar, fearing the prospect
of dreadful leprosy spreading to his whole body, decided to end his
life. He expressed his desire to the head-priest. The head-priest
cautioned Bhadreshwar that if he went ahead with his decision, then the
whole kingdom would be destroyed. He said --- 'You will be cured of
leprosy, if you worship Lord Surya.'
The head-priest then told the king about the appropriate rituals of
Surya--worship. King Bhadreshwar began his austerities and worshipped
Lord Surya by chanting mantras and offering articles like Naivedya,
fruits, Ardhya, Akshat etc to the deity.King Bhadreshwar was cured of
his leprosy within a year by the virtue of his deep devotion towards
contains 6 sections.
Once, Yayati requested Matali to
describe the various sinful and virtuous deeds, which a man normally
commits in his life.
Matali replied----'One who criticizes the vedas and follows the religion
of other's after abandoning his own or torments virtuous people is a
grave sinner. Similarly, not respecting one's parents, not giving
'dakshina' to a brahmin after the completion of a shraddh ceremony,
studying the scriptures in an impure physical state are some other
'One who obstructs a hungry man from having his food or thirsty person
from quenching his thirst commits a sin similar to that of killing a
Matali described some other types of sins ---
Back biting, seeing faults with others and demeaning their efforts,
acquiring other's land by unfair means, killing innocent animals, having
illicit relationship with women other than one's wife, telling lies,
showing disrespect to the guests etc, are considered to be sinful deeds.
Describing about the various types of virtuous deeds, Matali said ---
Non-violence, forgiveness, truthfulness, devotion towards god,
benevolence, abstinence, oblation & meditation are some of the virtuous
deeds. Donating food-grains, domesticated animals like horse, cow etc.
giving water to a thirsty person are some other types of virtuous
deeds.A person who donates wooden sandals a needy brahmin attains to the
heaven. Worshipping Lord Shiva or Lord Vishnu enables a man to attain to
the Shivaloka or Vishnuloka respectively.
King Yayati was the son of Nahush
and a descendant of Soma--dynasty. He was a great devotee of Lord Vishnu
and had contributed a lot in the propagation of Vaishnava--dharma.
Yayati had sent many emissaries in all directions to propagate
Vaishnava--dharma. During Yayati's reign his subject were prosperous and
were free from any kind of sorrow. Peace prevailed everywhere and people
did not experience any natural calamity like draught or famine.
King Yayati enjoyed an unbelievably long life of one lakh years. He was
blessed with eternal youth and his appearance was enough to give an
inferiority complex to a young man. All this, he had attained by the
virtue of his supreme devotion towards Lord Vishnu. Indra was very
scared of Yayati's increasing popularity and feared that if his
virtuosity remained intact, he would very soon become the ruler of
heaven. Indra instructed Kamadeva and Rati to find some means so that
king Yayati could be enticed by human weaknesses like lust &
Kamadeva, accompanied by other Gandharvas went to Yayati's palace and
sought his permission to stage a play. Yayati gave his permission and
the play commenced. Rati appeared on the stage as a beautiful woman and
was successful in corrupting the thoughts of Yayati. Yayati became so
enchanted by Rati's beauty that he lost his senses and fell down
unconscious. Finding the time opportune 'Vriddhavastha' (deity of old
age) and 'Kamadeva' entered Yayati's body.This way the deities were
successful in their designs and now the signs of old-age started to
become evident in Yayati.
Once, king Yayati
went into a forest for hunting. He saw a stag, which had four horns and
chased it. The deer led him deep into the forest and then disappeared.
Yayati was tired and thirsty. He saw a lake and decided to quench his
thirst. First of all he took his bath and then drank sweet water from
the lake.As Yayati was relaxing at the bank of that lake, he heard a
sweet voice singing a song. Yayati proceeded towards the direction from
which the sound was coming. He saw a beautiful woman singing a song. Her
companion accompanied the beautiful woman.Yayati became enchanted by the
divine beauty of that woman and wanted to marry her. The beautiful
woman's companion told Yayati that her friend could marry him only after
he shed the signs of his old age.
The beautiful woman was Ashrubindumati--the daughter of Rati.Vishala-her
companion was the daughter of Varun. Yayati returned to his palace and
requested his two sons--Taru and Yadu to exchange their youth in lieu of
his old age, but both of them refused to oblige him. Yayati cursed both
Yayati had a son---Puru from his wife named Sharmishtha. When he made
the same request to Puru, he agreed without any hesitation. Yayati
became pleased with Puru and appointed him as his successor.
Now, Yayati became young once again and went to meet Ashrubindumati.
But, Ashrubindumati's friend Vishala was still not convinced and
expressed apprehension that her friend would never play second fiddle to
his two wives--Sharmishtha and Devayani.King Yayati, being blinded by
his lust, assured Vishala that Ashrubindumati would enjoy the supreme
authority and she had nothing to fear. He said--"I promise that you will
be my only wife and I will have nothing to do with my wives."
This way Yayati married Ashrubindumati and enjoyed a blissful married
life for twenty-thousand years. Once, Ashrubindumati expressed her
desire of visiting all the divine places--Indraloka, Brahmaloka,
Shivaloka and Vishnuloka. Yayati took back his old age from Puru and
returned his youth. He appointed Puru as his successor and instructed
his subject to live peacefully. But, the people wanted to be with
Yayati, so all of them accompanied him to the heaven. Yayati visited
all the divine places and ultimately attained to Vishnuloka.
Once, while describing about the
importance of a teacher, Lord Vishnu had narrated the following tale to
king Ven--- Sage Chyavan came from the lineage of Bhargav. Once, he
arrived at Omkareshwar with the objective of acquiring knowledge. Since
he was tired, he decided to take rest under the shade of a Banyan tree.
A parrot named Kunjal lived on that tree. The parrot had four young
ones--Ujjawal, Samujjwal, Vijjwal and Kapinjal. Kunjal was a very
learned parrot and had mastery over all the scriptures. Once, Ujjawal
requested Kunjal to give discourse on various aspects of religiousness.
Kunjal said---The whole world is full of sorrow. A man can be liberated
from his sorrow by the means of salvation because salvation is free from
sorrow. Salvation can be attained with the help of abstinence,
self-control and having deep devotion in lord Vishnu. The soul being
enlightened is also called 'Paramatma'. But, covered by the darkness of
ignorance it becomes difficult for the soul to attain salvation. A
devotee can meditate on both the forms of Lord Vishnu--Sakar (with form)
& Nirakar (formless). But, meditating on the Sakar form is easy for
anybody. On the other hand only an enlightened soul can meditate on the
'nirakar' form of Lord Vishnu. There are various austerities related
with Lord Vishnu and which if observed by a devotee, pleases him--Jaya,
Vijaya, Jayanti, Vanjuli, Tilgandha, Trihsprisha, Akshanda and
Manoraksha. All these austerities are similar to different types of
Ekadashi or Dwadashi Vrata. Similarly, two other austerities namely
Ashunyashayan and Janmashtami are capable of freeing a man from all his
sin. A devotee who chants Shatnaam stotra attains salvation.
Describing the virtue of
benevolence to Vijjwal. Kunjal--the learned parrot narrated the
following tale ---
Once, there lived a king named Subahu who ruled over chola desha. A
learned brahmin named Jaimini used to counsel him on religious and
spiritual matters.One day, while Jaimini was giving a discourse on the
virtue of benevolence, Subahu requested him to describe about those
deeds that enables a man either to attain to the heaven or to hell.
Jaimini replied--- One who earns his livelihood by improper means
definitely goes to hell. Similarly, atheists, licentious people, proudy,
backbiters and ungrateful people go to hell too. One who gobbles up
other's wealth by illegal means or shows disrespect to his guest goes to
hell.One who is a habitual liar or one who kills innocent animals or one
who has abandoned the religious path is certain to go to hell.One who is
truthful and engages himself in various virtuous deeds like penance,
meditation, study of the scriptures, goes to the heaven. One who is
respectful towards his elders and leads a virtuous life goes to the
heaven. In the same manner, he who is benevolent and free from vices
like jealousy hatred etc. goes to the heaven. Similarly, one who leads
his life as per the instructions given in the scriptures or has full
control over his sensual desires goes to the heaven.
King Subahu was so impressed by Jaimini's preaching that he decided to
spend rest of his life in the service of lord Madhusudan. He performed
countless oblations as long as he was alive and attained to Vishnuloka
after his death.
Sage Chyavan, who had been
listening to the narration of Kunjal, was amazed by his profound
knowledge. He asked Kunjal---O great soul! Who are you? From where did
you acquire such divine knowledge.'
Kunjal, who remembered everything about his previous birth said--
In my previous birth, I was the youngest son of a brahmin named
Vidyadhar. My name was Dharma Sharma. Seeing my dislike for study, my
father became worried about my future. I used to waste my time loitering
here and there. People used to make fun of my stupidity, which made me
extremely sad. I decided to acquire knowledge but did not find anybody
willing to teach me.
In due course of time I became old but was still an idiot. One day, I
was sitting in a temple cursing my fate. Suddenly, a sage arrived there
and asked me as to what made me so sad. I narrated my woeful tale. The
sage felt pity on my condition and blessed me with divine knowledge that
made me capable of having advance knowledge of all the future incidents
of the world. Sage Chyavan was curious to know about the reason that
made Dharma Sharma to be born as a parrot.
Kunjal replied--- O Brahmin! A man is influenced by the company he
keeps. The reason why I took birth as a parrot is related with an
incident, which occurred in my previous birth. Once, a wicked fowler
sold a parrot to a brahmin who in turn presented it to me. With the
passage of time I became very attached with the parrot and gradually
deviated from my virtuous path. As a result all my divine knowledge
vanished and I became an idiot once again.
One day,a cat arrived and killed that parrot in my absence. I became
very sad and used to spend my time crying over the dead parrot.
Ultimately I died but even at the time of death, my mind was preoccupied
with the thoughts of my beloved parrot. As a result, I was born as a
parrot but fortunately I remembered my previous birth even while I was
still in my mother's womb. I was full of remorse and used to curse
myself for having wasted my life.Sage Chyavan was amazed by the
narration of Kunjal--the learned parrot.
contains 5 sections.
Once, sages requested Sutji to
describe about the most prominent places of pilgrimage situated in
Bharatvarsha. Sutji commenced his narration by describing the origin of
creation and then switched over to the geographical characteristics of
Bharatvarsha. Sutji said---'There are seven prominent mountain ranges in
Bharatvarsha--Mahendra, Malay, Sahya, Shaktiman, Rikshavan, Vindhya and
Pariyatra. Some prominent rivers supplying potable water to the
inhabitants of Bharatvarsha are---Ganga, Sindhu, Saraswati, Godwari,
Narmada, Shatadru, Yamuna, Vipasha, Mahanadi, Vidisham, Varuna etc. The
names of the main Janapadas situated in the northern part of
Bharatvarsha are Kuru, Panchal, Shalva, Matreya, Jaangal, Shoorsen,
Pulind, Baudh, Chedi, Matsya, Bhoj, Sindhu, Utkal, Koshal, Madra,
Kalinga, Kashi, Malav, Magadh, Videh, Anga, Banga, Surashtra, Kekay,
Kashmir & Gandhar. Similarly, Janpadas like Dravid, Keral. Prachya,
karnatak, Kuntal, chol, Sauhrid, Kona, Korak, Kalad, Mushal and Sutap
are situated in the southern part of Bharatvarsha.
Sutji then described about the greatness of Pushkar teerth by recounting
an incident related with the Pandavas---
"One day, Sage Narad visited the Pandavas who were living in exile. The
Pandavas had visited many places during the course of their exile period
and wanted to know about the fruits they had acquired due to their
"Sage Narad then recounted an incident when king Dilip had once posed
the same question to Sage Vashishth. Sage Vashishth while describing
about the greatness of Pushkar said---Pushkar teerth is the holiest
place where lord Brahma has his abode. Deities consider themselves
fortunate to be at Pushkar. A person who takes a holy dip at Pushkar and
worships lord Brahma acquires virtues equivalent to the accomplishment
of the Ashwamedha yagya."
Sage Vashishth continued with the description of some other prominent
places of pilgrimage like Jambumarg, Narmada Amarkantak etc.
Continuing with his narration,
Sage Vashishth said--- A man desirous of going on a pilgrimage should
first of all visit Jambumarg, because it is revered even by the deities
and the sages. By visiting this holy place a man acquires virtue
equivalent to the accomplishment of an Ashwamedha yagya and attains to
Vishnuloka. A man should then visit Tundulikashram, Agastya Ashram &
Kanya Ashram, which are situated near Jambumarg. Taking a dip in the
holy water of Kotiteerth, situated near Mahakal temple is believed to
bestow undiminished virtue. Bhadravat is a famous place of pilgrimage
related with Lord Shiva and paying a visit here gives virtue equivalent
to donation of 1000 cows.
A man who takes holy dip in river Narmada and performs 'tarpan' in the
name of manes acquires fruits similar to the accomplishment of Agnishtom
yagya. Narmada is the holiest of all the river. A man becomes liberated
from his sins by taking bath for three weeks in river Saraswati.
Similarly it takes one week of regular bath in river yamuna for a man to
become absolved of all his sins. The mere touch of Ganga water liberates
a man from all his sins, but mere sight of river Narmada is enough to
liberate a man from all his sins.
Kotirudras are believed to dwell in the vicinity of Amarkantak mountain.
All together sixty crores and sixty thousand places of pilgrimage are
situated all around this holy mountain. Anybody present in the vicinity
of this mountain must refrain from any kind of sinful deeds. Visiting
Amarkantak mountain during solar and Lunar eclipses is considered to be
extremely auspicious. Similarly the confluence site of Narmada and
Kaveri is considered to be sacrosanct. Anybody who takes a holy dip in
the confluence of Narmada and Kaveri becomes liberated from his sins.
Sage Narad continued with the
description of various holy places and said--- "A pilgrim must visit
Dharma Teerth, which is named after the lord of death--Dharma. Once upon
a time Dharmaraj had performed an austere penance at that place this is
the reason why it became famous as Dharma Teerth. By visiting Dharma
Teerth, a man liberated all his ancestors up to seventh generation.
After that a pilgrim should go to Kalap-forest, Saugandhik-forest,
Suvarna-Dhumavanti respectively. All the above mentioned holy places are
capable of giving salvation."
Describing about the virtues of taking a holy dip in river Kalini
(Yamuna) sage Narad said --
A person who takes a holy dip in Yamuna becomes liberated from all his
sorrows. The virtue acquired by taking a bath in Yamuna is greater than
paying visits to various holy places like Pushkar, Kurukshetra,
Brahmavarta and Kashi.Taking a dip in Yamuna also helps in the
fulfillment of all the desires of a man. Although, different rituals
have been attributed to various yugas like Saytayuga--penance,
Treta--Knowledge, Dwapar--yagya and Kaliyug--Donation, yet virtue of
taking a holy dip in Yamuna transcends even time."
"Although the whole stretch of river Yamuna is believed to be holy, yet
Yamuna flowing near Mathura holds special importance because of her deep
association with lord Krishna."Narad narrated a tale to prove the
significance of taking a bath in Yamuna.
"During Satyayuga there lived a Vaishya named Hemakundal. He had earned
lot of wealth by dint of hard work. Although he was very rich yet
happiness deluded him, as he had no progeny. He was worried as to who
would inherit his property after his death.
"In course of time, Hemakundal attained old age and after realizing
about the impermanence of the world indulged himself in virtuous deeds.
He was blessed with two sons--Shrikundal & Vikundal. When both his sons
grew up, Hemakundal went into the forest to do penance."
"Shri Kundal and Hemakundal squandered the whole wealth which their
father had earned so painstakingly. Both of them were of loose moral
character and had illicit relationship with many prostitutes. In a very
short time they became poor and both of them starved to death. When the
yamdoots reached yamloka after taking their souls, Yamraj ordered--'Put
Shri Kundal in Raurav hell but send Vikundal to the heaven.' While
Vikundal was being taken to the heaven he asked one of the
yamdoots--'The sins committed by my brother and me were almost
identitical then why is my brother being sent to hell while I am being
sent to heaven.'
replied-You are being metted out this special treatment on account of
your virtues acquired by bathing twice in river Yamuna.There was a
brahmin friend of your's named Swamitra.You had accompanied him to
Mathura and twice taken bath in the holy Yamuna. By the virtue of the
first bath you became liberated from all your sins, while the second
bath helped you in attaining to the heaven.Vikundal requested the
yamdoot to allow his brother to accompany him to heaven. Yamdoot replied
that his brother could accompany him to the heaven provided he donated
all his virtues to him.
Vikundal agreed to donate his virtues to his elder brother for the sake
of his liberation. This way, both Shrikundal and Vikundal attained to
On being asked by Yudhishthir
about the grandeur of holy places like Kashipuri, Kapardishwar & Gaya.
Narad said ---
Just as Lord Mahadev is supreme among all the deities, in the same
manner Kashipuri holds a significant status among all the places of
pilgrimage. Hence an individual should make it a point to visit Kashi
once in his life time. The famous Shiva linga Kopardishwar is installed
at Kashi and is said to fulfill all the desires of a man. Performance of
various rituals at Kashi liberates a man from all his sins-all his flaws
are eliminated automatically just by residing in Kashi.
A devotee who regularly practices meditation in the temple of Lord
Kapordishwar attains Yogasiddhi within six months. Worshipping Lord
Kapardishwar after taking a holy dip in Pishach-mochan kunda liberates a
man from gravest of sin like 'Brahmahatya', etc. Gaya is considered to
be a sacrosanct place of pilgrimage and various rituals for the
pacification of the souls of dead ancestors are performed here. Anybody
who offers Pindadaan and tarpan at Gaya not only liberates his ancestors
but also himself. There is a very famous Banyan tree named Akshayvat at
Gaya. Gaya is situated at the bank of river Falgu.
According to Sutji,
all the Puranas are nothing but the mediums through which Sri Hari
manifests himself---Brahma Puran is said to be the Forhead of Srihari,
Padma Puran is said to be the 'heart' of Srihari, Vishnu Puran is said
to be the 'right arm' of Srihari. Shiva Puran is said to be the 'left
arm' of Srihari. Shrimad Bhagawat is said to be His 'thigh', Narad Puran
is said to be His 'navel', Markendeya Puran is said to be His
'right-foot'. Agni Puran is said to be His 'left foot', Bhavish Puran is
said to be His 'right-knee', Brahma Vaivratapuran is said to be His
'left-knee'. Linga Puran is said to be His 'right ankle', Varaha Puran
is said to be His 'left ankle' Skanda Puran is said to be the hair on
the body of 'Sri Hari.
- Vaman Puran is
said to be His Skin
- Kurma Puran is
said to be His Back
- Matsya Puran is
said to be His Stomach
- Garuda Puran is
said to be His Bone-narrow
- Brahmanda Puran
is said to be His Bone.
So, all the Puranas
being manifestation of different parts of Sri Hari's body are very
sacred and capable of bestowing salvation.
contains 10 sections.
Once, Sages requested Sutji to
describe about Sri Ram's return from Lanka. Sutji narrated the same
tale, which Sheshnag had once told Vatsyayan.Sheshnag said--After the
killing of demon king Ravan, Sri Ram appointed Vibhishan as the king of
Lanka. He then decided to return to Ayodhya on Pushpak-Viman, which
Vibhishan had presented to him. He along with Sita, Laxman, Sugreev and
Hanuman boarded the aircraft and flew towards Ayodhya.The earth looked
beautiful from such a high altitude and Sri Ram was continuously
describing about the importance of various places over which the
aircraft flew. As the aircraft was about to enter the airspace of
Ayodhya, Sri Ram recognized Bharat, who was living at Nandigram at that
time. Bharat had vowed not to enter Ayodhya till the return of Sri Ram,
hence he stayed at Nandigram situated at the outskirts of Ayodhya
awaiting Sri Ram's return. He led an austere life as the result of which
he had become weak and feeble.
On seeing Bharat, Sri Ram instructed Hanuman to inform him about his
(Ram's) arrival. Hanuman went to the hermitage of Bharat and informed
him about Sri Ram's arrival. Bharat's joy knew no bound and he expressed
his desire to reward Hanuman for bringing such auspicious news. Bharat
then accompanied Hanuman and went to meet Sri Ram.Sri Ram's heart was
filled with grief when he saw Bharat, who looked like a hermit in his
'Valkal' and 'Kaupin'. On the other hand Bharat cursed himself for being
the cause of Sri Ram's miseries. Bharat asked for Sri Ram's forgiveness
and said---'O Lord! You had to go into exile only because of me. I can
never be absolved of my sin.'
Sri Ram consoled him and after taking Bharat into his embrace enquired
about his welfare. He told Bharat that he had to undergo the sufferings
of exile because of his own destiny.'You are not at fault. Don't curse
yourself for my misery.' said Sri Ram. At last all of them including
Bharat boarded Pushpak Viman and the aircraft took- off for
Ayodhya.Continuing with Sri Ram's tale, Sheshnag said--When Sumanth
brought the news of Sri Ram's arrival at Ayodhya, people danced in joy,
Preparations started being made for Sri Ram's grand reception. The whole
city of Ayodhya was decorated with rows of lighted lamps.
Sri Ram and Sita alighted from the Pushpak Viman and both of them were
carried in a palanquin to the palace. People stood in queues on both
sides of the road with folded hands. Sri Ram blessed them by raising his
hand.First of all Ram went to meet Kaikayi who was full of remorse and
guilt. Sri Ram consoled her and then went to meet Sumitra to pay his
obeisance to her. At last, he went to meet his own mother--Kaushalya,
who was dying to see him. Kaushalya blessed Sri Ram, Sita and Laxman.
Bharat then instructed the royal astrologers to decide upon an
auspicious moment for Sri Ram's coronation. Thus Sri Ram became the king
of Ayodhya. During his reign peace and prosperity prevailed everywhere.
People were virtuous and there was no sign of sin.
People of Ayodhya lived
peacefully during Sri Ram's reign until one fateful day when they were
struck by a bad news--Sri Ram had abandoned Sita after a Washerman
leveled an unfair charge against her character. Such was the greatness
of Sri Ram that opinion of each and every individual was given due
respect irrespective of his position and status. One day, Sage Agastya
arrived in the royal court of Sri Ram. After the formal Salutations were
over. Sage Agastya complimented Sri Ram for killing Ravana.
Sri Ram asked Agastya--'Who was Ravana-- the tormentor of deities? I am
anxious to know about the origin of his whole clan."
Sage Agastya replied--Vishrava was the grandson of Lord Brahma. His
father was sage Pulastya. Vishrava had two wives--Mandakini and Kaikasi.
Mandakani's son was Kubera while Kaikasi was the mother of Ravana,
Kumbhakarna and Vibhishan. Kubera ruled over Lanka. One day, Kubera,
came to see his parents boarded on his aircraft--Pushpak Viman. After he
returned to Lanka, Ravana, who was very much impressed by Kubera's royal
appearances asked Kaikasi--"Who was this fellow? From where did he
acquire such an amazing aircraft."
Kaikasi revealed to Ravana that the guest was none other than his
step-brother Kubera. She said--"Kubera is the son of your step
mother--Mandakini. He has made his mother proud by his conduct but I am
ashamed of you, because of your inconsequential existence. You are no
better than a worm."
Ravan decided to prove his mother wrong by acquiring insurmountable
power and authority. Ravana went to the forest and performed an austere
penance for ten thousand years by standing on one foot. He fixed his
gaze at the sun and never for a moment did he remove his gaze from it.
Kumbhakarna and Vibhishan also engaged themselves in austere penance. At
last, Lord Brahma became pleased and blessed Ravana with a vast kingdom.
Ravan then started tormenting his step-brother Kumbhakarna. He snatched
Kubera's Pushpak Viman and drove him out of Lanka. Ravan then turned his
attention towards the deities and drove them out of heaven. The deities
went to seek the help of Lord Brahma who in turn took them to Lord
Shiva. Even Lord Shiva was clueless about the means by which the
indomitable Ravana could be subdued. Ultimately all of them including
Lord Shiva went to Lord Vishnu and sought his help.
Lord Vishnu assured
them by saying ---
"I shall take incarnation as Ram at a place called Ayodhya. Presently,
Ayodhya is being ruled by Dashrath, who inspite of having three queens,
does not have any son. I shall manifest myself as Ram. Don't worry! I
shall eliminate the menace called Ravana." Sage Agastya also told Sri
Ram that Ravana belonged to the caste called 'Brahmrakshas'. This way,
Sage Agastya after having finished his narration looked at Sri Ram
anticipating further queries.
Sri Ram requested sage Agastya to
tell about the means by which he could become liberated from the sins of
killing brahmins. Sage Agastya advised him to perform Ashwamedha-yagya.
He also described the rituals of performing Ashwamedha Yagya--- "Get a
horse of white colour and after worshipping it on Vaishakh Purnima leave
it to wander freely. Tie a piece of paper on its forehead on which your
name and other details are mentioned. Soldiers should follow that horse
wherever it goes. You should fight a battle against any king who dares
to stop the horse. You should lead a celibate life till the horse
returns back to the same place from where it had been let loose. It is
customary for the performer of Ashwamedha yagya to indulge himself in
benevolent deeds till the completion of Ashwamedha yagya." Sri Ram
agreed to perform Ashwamedha yagya. He went to the seashore accompanied
by numerous sages. He then cultivated a vast expanse of land with the
help of a golden plough. A large oblation site was constructed and thus
began Ashwamedha yagya under the supervision of Vashishth.
As per the advice of Sage
Vashishth, Sri Ram instructed his soldiers to bring a white-horse. A
white parasol was fixed on its back and the horse was decorated with
colourful clothes. The horse was then let loose and the faithful
soldiers of Sri Ram followed it wherever the horse went.A gold-sheet was
hanged in the horse's neck and upon which was inscribed--This horse
belongs to Sri Ram--the son of Dasharath. Anybody who dares to stop this
horse will meet ruthless punishment.
Shatrughan followed the horse as per the instruction of his elder
brother -- Sri Ram. Bharat and Pushkal also accompanied him. A huge army
led by Kalnemi was marching behind the horse.
Some of the kings tried to stop
the horse, but were defeated by Shatrughan. This way the horse continued
to move ahead without any problem till it reached the bank of river
Ganga.It was early morning and Lav after noticing the presence of horse
become curious. He went near the horse and tried to read the inscription
hanging down it's neck. He made fun of the might of Sri Ram and fastened
the horse.The soldiers tried to release the horse but Lav severed their
arms. They returned to Shatrughan and narrated the whole incident to
Shatrughan became extremely
furious after seeing the condition of his injured soldiers. He
instructed Kalnemi to teach Lav a lesson. Kalnemi confronted Lav with a
huge army and a ferocious battle took place. Lav managed to kill
Kalnemi, which created havoc in the rival's army. The surviving soldiers
tried to hold their ground but were forced to flee on account of a
fierce assault from Lav.
Shatrughan then ordered Pushkal to fight Lav but he became unconscious
after being hit by Lav's arrow. Now, Shatrughan's anger crossed all
limits and he ordered Hanuman to kill Lav.Hanuman uprooted a large tree
and tried to hit Lav, but Lav cut that tree into hundred pieces with a
volley of arrows. Lav then released many arrows in the direction of
Hanuman. Hanuman fought valiantly but ultimately he fell down
learnt about Hanuman's fate he was infuriated and went to fight Lav. But
when he saw a tender looking child in front of him he was surprised.
Shatrughan asked --
'O brave child! Who are you! Who is your father?'
But Lav was not interested in his irrelevant queries and challenged him
for a duel. Shatrughan was left with no other option but to fight. A
tremendous battle was fought between them. Shatrughan released volleys
of arrow towards Lav but all of them were neutralized by him. For a
brief time Shatrughan lost his consciousness. After regaining his
consciousness, he aimed his most lethal weapon towards Lav. The arrow
hit Lav and he fell down unconscious. Lav's companions went and informed
Sita about the whole incident. Kush came forward to fight against Sri
Ram's army. When he reached the battlefield he saw Lav who was held
captive by the enemy's army's. By that time, Lav had regained his
consciousness and after seeing Kush he somehow managed to free himself
from the clutches of his captors.
Now, both the brothers launched a fierce attack on the enemy. The whole
army of Sri Ram started running helter and shelter. It did not take much
time for Lav and Kush to vanquish the whole army. All the great warriors
like Hanuman, Sugreeva, Pushkal, Angad Veermani and even Shatrughan were
either held captive or injured in the battle.Both the brothers fastened
Hanuman and Sugreeva with ropes and took them to Sita. Sita immediately
recognized Hanuman and Sugreeva. She instructed both her sons to set
them free as well as the horse. Lav and Kush followed the instruction of
Sita and released everybody from their captivity. Sita then
whispered---'May all the dead soldiers become alive.' Her words came
true and all the dead soldiers became alive once again. Shatrughan
regained his consciousness too.
to return to Ayodhya. He instructed Sumati to make all the necessary
arrangements for the safe return of the Caravan, which comprised not
only of Sri Ram's army but also of all the defeated kings and their
vanquished armies. When Sri Ram came to know about their arrival, he
sent Laxman to receive them. Laxman received the victorious army with
all the honour and the all of them came to the palace. Sri Ram curiously
asked Sumati about everything that had happened.
Sumati paraded all the vanquished kings who had made the mistake of
stopping the horse-- Sumad, Sabahu, Daman, Satyavan, Surath, etc. He
then narrated the brave deed of Lav and Kush.He also revealed how mighty
warriors like Hanuman, Sugreeva Shatrughan etc had been defeated by both
Sage Valmiki was
present in Ayodhya to attend the Ashwamedha yagya. Sri Ram asked him
about the identity of the two children--Lav and Kush, Valmiki said ---
Sita was pregnant at the time you had abandoned her. I gave her refuge
in my hermitage where she gave birth to twins--Lav and Kush. Both the
children were brought up in my hermitage with love and care. I taught
them all the sacred texts and scriptures and made them masters of
various weaponries. So, Lav and Kush are your sons. You must bring Sita
back to Ayodhya with due honour, because she is pure and chaste.
Moreover your whole army owe its life to her."
Sri Ram's heart was filled with grief. He instructed Laxman to bring
Sita along with Lav and Kush. Laxman went to Valmiki's hermitage and
requested Sita to return to Ayodhya. Sita refused to return but sent Lav
and Kush along with Laxman. When Sri Ram found that only Lav and Kush
had come, he once again sent Laxman to bring Sita. Laxman followed his
instruction and went to Valmiki's hermitage for the second
time.Meanwhile, Valmiki instructed Lav and Kush to sing the praise of
Sri Ram in their melodious voice. Everybody was moved by their soulful
rendition. Sri Ram took Lav and Kush in his embrace.
Sri Ram eulogised
all the revered sages who had arrived to attend the Ashwamedha yagya.
The holy water of Saryu was brought and sprinkled in the yagya kund
where Ashwamedha yagya was being performed, amidst the chanting of vedic
mantras.Hardly had Sri Ram touched the horse with his hands then it
transformed into a human being. Everybody was amazed by this incident.
Sri Ram asked that man as to how he had attained the form of a horse.
The man revealed to the assembled people that he had become a horse due
to Durvasa's curse. 'Later on Sage Durvasa had mercy on me and assured
that I would regain my human form by the divine touch of Sri Ram.'
Having said this the man attained to the heaven. In course of time Sri
Ram organised two more Ashwamedha yagyas and his glory reverberated
through all the three worlds.
contains 23 sections.
Once, on being asked by the sages
about the greatness of Badrikasharam, Sutji narrated the same tale,
which Lord Shiva had once told sage Narad ---
Lord Mahadeva had told Narad that altogether there were one lakh and
twenty-five thousand mountains and Badrikashram was supreme among them.
Lord Mahadeva said---Badrikasharam is the abode of Lord Nara-Narayan.
Narayan--the origin of all creations has four arms and his complexion is
dark. Narayan manifests himself in both forms--Sakar as well as Nirakar.
He is the eternal Purusha and is worshipped by people during the full
period of Uttarayan. Since Badrikashram is covered with snow during the
period of Dakshinayan, Narayan is not worshipper during these six
months. All the deities dwell at Badrikasharam. The sages live in their
hermitages at Badrikasharam. River Alaknanda flows at Badrikasharam.
Anybody taking a dip in the holy water of Alaknanda becomes liberated
from his sins.
Describing about the reason why
river Ganga was brought down on the earth, Lord Mahadeva told Narad---
King Bhagirath was the architect of Ganga's arrival on the earth. He
wanted to liberate his dead ancestorss from the curse of Sage Kapil.King
Sagar came from the lineage of the famous king--Harishchandra. Sagar had
two queens. The elder queen had sixty thousand sons while the younger
queen had just one--Panchajan. Panchajan's son was Anshuman, who himself
was the father of Dilip. Dilip was the father of Bhagirath.
Bhagirath did an austere penance on the Himalayas for ten thousand
years. As a result, river Ganga descended on the earth. I (Shiva) held
her in the locks of my hair and she remained there for ten thousand more
years. Bhagirath requested me to release Ganga so that his ancestors
could be liberated. I agreed to release Ganga and Bhagirath took her to
the Patalloka where his ancestor's had been charred to death due to
Kapil's curse. Bhagirath sprinkled the water of Ganga on the ashes of
his ancestors and each of them attained salvation as a
result.Eventually, Ganga resurfaced at Haridwar--the most sacred place
curiously asked Lord Mahadeva as to what made Shani such a volatile
planet.Lord Mahadeva replied--- Shani is extremely violent by nature and
everybody is scarred of this planet. Once, the royal astrologer of
Dasharath was petrified at the prospect of Shani entering the
constellation of Rohini and warned him of its dire consequences. 'If the
Shani is not prevented from entering Rohini, then famine would occur
lasting for more than twelve years.' said the royal astrologers.
Dasharath went above the sky to subdue the might of Shani well armed
with divine weapons. Shani became terrified on seeing Dasharath in such
a menacing mood and expressed his willingness to fulfill his desires.
Giving a detailed
description of the qualities of a Vaishnava, Lord Mahadeva told Narad
A person who has total devotion in Lord Vishnu is called a Vaishnava. He
is truthful, kind and forgiving by nature. He engages himself in austere
penance and refrains from any kind of violence. He wears a Tulsi bead in
his neck and puts on tilak. He is well versed in sacred text like the
vedas, Purans etc.The mere sight of a Vaishnava is enough to liberate a
sinner from all his sins. Feeding a Vaishnava bestowes virtue equivalent
to feeding thousand of ordinary Brahmins.
The sages enquired
from Sutji about the holiest city situated on the banks of river yamuna.
Sutji narrated the tale which Sage Saubhari had once told
Yudhishthir---Once, Narad and Parvat were travelling through an aerial
route, while they were flying over Khandav forest, they were lured by
the beautiful sight of river Yamuna. They decided to take rest for a
while. Both of them descended down and entered river yamuna to take
their bath.Meanwhile, King Shibi who ruled over Ushinar saw them. He
eagerly waited at the bank of Yamuna. When Narad and Parvat emerged out
of the yamuna, they found king Shibi eagerly waiting for them. Meanwhile
king Shibi had noticed the remains of numerous 'havan-kundas'
(oblation-altars) spread in a large area.
After the formal exchanges of pleasantaries were over, King Shibi asked
Narad about those havan- kundas.
Narad replied--During ancient times Indra had performed numerous Yagyas
at this place to express his gratitude to Lord Vishnu, with whose
blessings he had regained the heaven from the clutches of
Hiranyakashipu. In course of time, this place became famous as
Indraprastha. This sacrosanct place is holier than all the holy places
combined together. Indraprastha is spread in the area of one yojan from
east to west and four yojans from north to south.
the grandeur of Vaikunth, Lord Mahadeva told Parvati--A person who has
total devotion in Lord Vishnu attains to Vaikunth after his death.
Vaikuntha is the abode of Vishnu and constitutes of numerous Janapadas.
The magnificence of Vaikunth is beyond description and it houses many
grand palaces fully decorated with jewels and diamonds.The central part
of Vaikuntha is called Ayodhya and is well protected by dwarpals named
Chanda, Prachanda, Bhadra, Subhadra, Jaya, Vijay, Dhata and
Vidhata.Vaikunth is inhabited by countless divine people who live in
well illuminated houses.
In the central part of Ayodhya is situated the 'antahpuri' of Lord
Vishnu. It is inhabited by celestial beauties--apsaras. There is a
divine Canopy situated just at the centre of antahpuri, where Lord
Vishnu has his divine throne. The divine throne is surrounded by deities
as well as by the embodiments of all the four Vedas--- Rigveda,
Yajurveda, Samaveda and Atharvaveda. The deities---Agni, Surya and
Chandrama have their dwellings at the centre of Vishnu's throne.There is
a grand pedestal called yogapeeth established on the throne. A beautiful
lotus flower is established on the yogapeeth on which is seated Lord
Vishnu along with his consort- Laxmi.
Lord Vishnu appears divine in his complexion of a blue lotus, whose
radiance is enough to subdue crores of sun. He has radiant ear-rings
hangings down his earlobes. His forehead is covered with curly hair. He
has the famous 'Kaustubh mani' in his neck. He holds a conch and a
chakra in each of his two hands and the remaining two hands are in the
posture of giving blessings.
Once, goddess Parvati expressed
her desire to know about all the incarnations of Lord Vishnu.Lord
Mahadeva replied-- Lord Brahma had created numerous Prajapatis like
Bhrigu, Marichi, Atri, Daksha, Kardam, Pulastya, Pulaha, Angira and
Kratu. Marichi was the father of Kashyap. Sage Kashyap had four
wives--Aditi, Diti, Kadru and Vinta.Aditi was the mother of Deities
while Diti gave birth to demons like--Makar, Hayagreeva, Mahabali,
Hiranyaksha, Hiranyakashipu Jambha, Maya etc. Makar was a mighty demon,
Who after deceitfully acquiring the Vedas from Lord Brahma had hidden
himself inside an ocean. Lord Brahma requested Vishnu to liberate the
sacred Vedas from the possession of Makar.
Lord Vishnu then took the incarnation of Matsya and after killing Makar
gave back the vedas to Lord Brahma. Durvasa was the son of Sage Atri.
Once, he went to Indraloka to see Indra. At that time, Indra was
planning to go out somewhere. Durvasa presented a garland of Parijat
flowers to Indra. Indra, after receiving the garland from Durvasa kept
it carelessly on the forehead of his elephant-Eravat. This garland was
trampled under its feet by the elephant, which infuriated Sage Durvasa.
He cursed Indra by saying---Immense prosperity has made you arrogant.
But you will become a pauper within a very short time.
Durvasa's words came to be true and Indra found that not only the heaven
but all the three worlds had become bereft of goddess Laxmi. Prosperity
vanished and poverty prevailed everywhere.The deities became worried and
went to take the help of Lord Brahma. Lord Brahma took the deities to
Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu became pleased with their eulogy and said --
I will take incarnation as Kurma. If the ocean were churned with the
help of Mandarachal mountain and Vasuki, then goddess Laxmi would
manifest herself. I shall hold the Mandarachal mountain on my back.This
way the churning of ocean commenced. The Mandarachal mountain was
uprooted and placed inside the 'Ksheer-Sagar' and which rested on the
back of Lord Kurma. The serpent--Vasuki, was held by deities and demons
on both the ends. First of all the most venomous poison--Kalkut emerged
from the ocean. Seeing both the deities and demons unwilling to accept
it. (Lord Shiva) drank it.
After the emergence
of Kalkut, goddess Daridra and Varuni manifested themselves. Similarly,
Eravat- elephant, Uchchaishrava-horse, Dhanvantaari, Surabhi--cow and
Parijat- tree emerged from the ocean.Ultimately, goddess Laxmi
manifested herself. The deities requested her to dwell in the heart of
Lord Vishnu and bless all the three worlds by her presence. Goddess
Laxmi agreed and blessed them.
Continuing with the
various incarnations of Lord Vishnu, Lord Mahadeva told Parvati ---
Sage Kashyap had two mighty sons from Diti--Hiranyakashipu and
Hiranyaksha. Hiranyaksha had once carried the earth to Rasatala. The
deities requested Lord Vishnu to rescue the earth. Lord Vishnu took the
incarnation of a boar and killed Hiranyaksha with his sharp horn.When
Hiranyakshipu learnt about his brother's death he went to Merugiri
mountain and started doing penance to please me (Lord Shiva). I blessed
him with immortality, Later on, Hiranyakashipu married Uttanpad's
daughter--Kalyani and had a son named Prahlad from her.Inspite of being
born in the clan of a demon, Prahlad proved to be an extremely religious
child and was a supreme devotee of Lord Vishnu.
When Hiranyakshipu came to know about Prahlad's religious tendency, he
tried his best to stop him from worshipping Vishnu. But, all his efforts
went in vain and Prahlad continued to worship Lord Vishnu.Hiranyakashipu
instructed his subordinates to kill Prahlad but each time he came out
unharmed. One day, Hiranyakashipu pulled out his sword and said---'You
say that Vishnu is omnipresent. Is he present in this pillar?' Having
said like this he assaulted the pillar with his sword. Suddenly to his
Sheer amazement, Lord Vishnu manifested himself from that pillar in the
form of Nrisimha.
Hiranyakashipu had been blessed by Lord Shiva that he could be killed
neither by a man nor a beast. No weapon could harm him. He could be
killed neither during the day nor during the night. Hiranyakashiu had
taken into consideration all the possible threat perceptions to his life
and tried to become immortal.But, Lord Vishnu takes incarnation to
protect the humanity whenever religiousness is under threat. This time,
Lord Vishnu took incarnation as Nrisimha (partly lion and partly human)
and tore apart his belly with his sharp nails.After the death of
Hiranyakashipu, Prahlad was coronated as his successor. Prahlad ruled
justly and his subject were happy and satisfied.
Continuing with the various
incarnations of Lord Vishnu, Lord Mahadeva told Parvati ---
Prahlad had a son named Virochan.The most benevolent
king--'Mahabahu-Bali' was Virochan's son. Bali had defeated the deities
and ruled over all the three worlds. Sage Kashyap commenced the most
austere penance--Payovrata to help the deities regain their lost kingdom
(heaven) once again. He was accompanied by his wife--Aditi in his
penance which lasted for one thousand years. At last, Lord Vishnu became
pleased by their penance and appeared before them. Sage Kashyap narrated
the woeful tales of the deities and requested him to make Indra the Lord
of all the three worlds. Lord Vishnu promised that he would take
incarnation as Vaman.In course of time, Aditi became pregnant and
ultimately gave birth to Lord Vaman. Lord Vaman appeared in the form of
a 'Brahmchari'. He wore a deer--Skin and carried a stick and a 'mekhala'
in both his hands. Lord Vishnu enquired the deities about the future
course of action. The deities informed him that Bali was busy performing
a yagya and he would not turn down any demand made to him because if he
did so there was a fear of loosing all his virtues attained by the
performance of the yagya.
Lord Vaman went to the oblation site where Bali was performing a yagya
and demanded a small piece of land measured by his three steps. Bali
agreed to meet the demand of his guest inspite of Shukracharya's
warning.Bali resolved to donate land by holding holy water in his palm.
Now, Lord Vaman abandoned his dwarfish form and appeared in a giant
form. He measured the whole earth by his first step. Lord Vishnu then
measured the whole sky by his second step. The helpless Bali agreed to
donate all the three worlds to protect his vow.Ultimately, Lord Vishnu
sent Bali to the Rasatala and thus Indra became the ruler of heaven once
Describing about Sri Ram's
incarnation Lord Mahadeva told Parvati--'Once, Swayambhuva Manu had
expressed his desire of having Lord Vishnu as his son to which Lord
Vishnu had agreed. During tretayuga Manu manifested himself as Dasharath
and Vishnu kept his promise by taking birth as his son--Sri Ram.
Similarly, during dwaparyuga Manu was born as Vasudev and Lord Vishnu
kept his word by taking birth as his son--Krishna. After the completion
of one thousand divine years, Manu will be born in the village of
Sambhal as Harigupta and lord Vishnu will take birth as his
Lord Shiva then continued with the incarnation of Sri Ram and
said--'Sage Vishrava was the son of Pulasya and was married to Kekashi.
Ravan and Kumbhakarna were born to the couple. Sage Vishrava also had a
daughter named Shurpanakha and a virtuous son named Vibhishan.Ravan and
Kumbhakarna did austere penance to please me (Lord Shiva). When I
appeared before Ravan he requested the boon of immortality from me.
After receiving the boon, Ravan became very arrogant and started
tormenting the inhabitants of all the three worlds. The deities became
scarred and took the refuge of Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu assured them
that he would solve their problem by taking incarnation as Sri Ram.
Dasharath came from the lineage of Surya. He had three
queens---Kaushalya, Sumitra and Kaikeyi. Once, Dasharath performed a
Vaishnav Yagya with the objective of acquiring a son. Lord Vishnu
appeared and assured him that he would take incarnation as Sri Ram in a
short time. Lord Vishnu gave a bowl of divine kheer to Dasharath, which
he distributed amongst his three queens. In course of time, Kaushalya
gave birth to Sri Ram on the auspicious day of Chaitra-Navami. The
deities and the sages rejoiced at his birth.
Continuing with the tale of Sri
Ram, Lord Mahadeva told Parvati--Dasharath requested Vashishth to
perform the Jaatkarm Sanskar of Sri Ram. In course of time Kaikeyi gave
birth to Bharat--an incarnation of Panchajanya conch. Similarly, Sumitra
gave birth to two sons--Laxman and Shatrughan. Laxman was the
incarnation of Sheshnag while Shatrughan was the incarnation of
Sudershan chakra. Sri Ram and his brothers received education under the
guidance of Sage Vashishth. In a very short time they became proficient
in all the scriptures and mastered various weaponaries. Although all the
four brothers were very close to each other, yet Laxman could not bear
to live in Ram's separation even for a moment and was specially close to
Sita manifested herself from the field while Janak was ploughing it.
King Janak brought up Sita with great love and care. At that time,
Vishwamitra was busy performing a grand yagya at Siddhashram. But the
demons created numerous problems and made it impossible for him to
accomplish the yagya. Vishwamitra went to Ayodhya and requested
Dasharath to send Sri Ram and Laxman along with him so that the yagya
could be accomplished without any problems. Dasharath agreed to send Sri
Ram and Laxman along with Vishwamitra.This way, Vishwamitra returned to
his hermitage acompanied by both the brothers. Garuda presented a pair
of bow and imperishable set of arrows to both the brothers.
While staying at the hermitage Sri Ram and Laxman killed many demons
like Taraka and Subahu. When Marich tried to disrupt the yagya, Sri Ram
attacked him with Pavan-astra, which sent Marich flying across the
sea-shore.Meanwhile, on learning that Janak was performing Vajapeya
yagya at Janakpur, Vishwamitra took Sri-Ram and Laxman to attend it. On
the way Sri Ram liberated Ahalya who had turned into a rock after being
cursed by her husband.After reaching Janakpur, Sri Ram broke Lord
Shiva's bow and married Sita. Laxman married Urmila. Dasharath had come
to attend the marriage ceremony accompanied by Bharat and Shatrughan.
Bharat was married to Mandavi while Shatrughan married Shrutkeerti.
Meanwhile, on learning that Sri Ram had broken Shiva's bow, Parshuram
arrived there and challenged him, but ultimately Parashuram realized
about the divinity of Sri Ram and accepted his superiority.At last, Sri
Ram, Laxman, Bharat and Shatrughan returned to Ayodhya alongwith their
continued with the tale of Sri Ram and told Parvati --Dasharath wanted
to appoint Sri Ram as his successor but Kaikeyi did not like this idea.
She wanted Bharat to be made the king of Ayodhya and Sri Ram to be sent
into exile for 14 years. Once, Kaikeyi had saved Dasharath's life while
he was fighting a battle against the demons. To show his gratitude,
Dasharath had promised two boons to her. At that time, Kaikeyi had told
Dasharath that she would make her demand at the appropriate time.
This way, Dasharath was compelled by Kaikeyi to accept the two demands.
As a result, Sri Ram was sent into exile. Bharat refused to become the
king of Ayodhya and vowed to wait till Sri Ram returned. Dasharath could
not bear the sorrow of Ram's separation and died in his sorrow. Bharat
tried his best to convince Sri Ram to change his mind and accept the
throne, but Sri Ram did not listen to his request. Bharat then brought
Sri Ram's wooden-sandal and kept it on the throne. He vowed to spend
rest of his life in austerities till Sri Ram returned.
While Sri Ram was still in exile, he went to the hermitage of Sage Atri
and received his blessings. Atri's wife- Anasuya preached Sita on the
virtues of chastity. Sri Ram also visited hermitages of some other
prominent sages like Sharbhanga, Suteeksha, Agastya etc. Once, while Sri
Ram was living in Panchavati, Shurpanakha arrived there. Shurpanakha was
Ravana's sister and wanted to marry Sri Ram, But Laxman severed her nose
and ears. She went to a mighty demon named Khar and narrated her woeful
tale. Khar attacked Ram with a huge army, which comprised of brave
warriors like Trishira Dushan etc. Sri Ram was Victorious in this battle
and Khar, Trishira and Dushan were killed.
Shurpanakha went to Ravan and
informed him about the misdeeds of Ram. Ravan was infuriated and wanted
to take revenge. He abducted Sita with the help of Marich.When Jatayu
saw Ravan carrying Sita to Lanka, he fought with valiance but was
injured in the ensuing battle.Sri Ram went in search of Sita and met
Jatayu, who was injured and who informed Ram that Sita had been abducted
by the demon king Ravan.Sri Ram met Hanuman at the Rishyamook mountain.
Later on he befriended Sugreeva on the advice of Hanuman. Sugreeva had
enemity with his brother-Bali. Sri Ram killed Bali and made Sugreeva the
Sri Ram requested Hanuman to find out the whereabouts of Sita. Hanuman
went to Lanka and found Sita at Ashoka Vatika. He destroyed the garden
and killed many demons including Ravana's son--Akshay Kumar. Ultimately,
he was captured by Meghnath and taken to Ravana's court. Ravan ordered
Hanuman's tail to be ignited. Hanuman then burnt the city of Lanka and
returned to Sri Ram. When Sri Ran came to know about the exact location
of Sita, he decided to attack Lanka with a huge army, which comprised of
monkeys. The army camped at the sea-shore where Vibhishan came to meet
A bridge was built across the ocean and the army reached Lanka. A fierce
battle took place in which many demons were killed. At last, Ravan came
forward to fight against Sri Ram but was killed.Sri Ram appointed
Vibhishan as the king of Lanka and blessed him. Vibhishan presented his
pushpak Viman to Sri Ram. All of them boarded the Pushpak Viman and flew
towards Ayodhya. On the way Sri Ram met Bharat who was still awaiting
his arrival at Nandigram. Sri Ram was very pleased to meet Bharat.
Ultimately all of them returned to Ayodhya.
coronation of Sri Ram Lord Mahadeva told Parvati--People of Ayodhya
rejoiced at the return of Sri Ram. An auspicious day was chosen for his
coronation and Sri Ram became the king of Ayodhya amidst the chantings
of Vedic mantras. Sri Ram ruled over Ayodhya for one thousand years
without any problem. Meanwhile, some ignorant people started pointing
out fingers at the character of Sita.Sri Ram decided to abandon Sita in
the forest to quell the rumour. Sita was pregnant at that time. Feeling
pity on her condition, Valmiki took her to his hermitage where Sita gave
birth to Lav and Kush.
Meanwhile Sri Ram decided to perform Ashwamedha yagya at the bank of
river Gomati. But, since the yagya could not have been accomplished
without Sita, therefore he performed the rituals seated beside a golden
idol of Sita, In the mean time Valmiki arrived there, accompanied by
Sita. He requested Sri Ram to accept Sita, vouching for her chastity.Sri
Ram told Valmiki--'I am confident of Sita's chastity but she will have
to prove her chastity for the satisfaction of common people.'
Sita was deeply hurt by Sri Ram's unkind remarks. She said--'May mother
earth swallow me if I ever had thought about any man other than my lord
Sri Ram.' Hardly had Sita finished her lines than the earth cracked and
Sita vanished into that crevice. Sri Ram's heart was filled with remorse
but thinking that it was perhaps in his destiny to live in separation
with Sita, returned to Ayodhya accompanied by Lav and Kush. In course of
time, Kaushalya, Sumitra and Kaikeyi left for heavenly abode. Sri Ram
continued to rule Ayodhya for 10,000 more years.
One day, Kala (death) arrived and reminded Sri Ram that the time had
arrived for him to leave his mortal body. Meanwhile Laxman became aware
of Sri Ram's decision of leaving his mortal body. He gave up his life by
taking samadhi in river Saryu. Sri Ram could not bear the sorrow caused
by Laxman's bereavment. He appointed Lav and Kush as the kings of
Dwarawati and Kushawati respectively and decided to leave for heavenly
Sri Ram entered the water of river Saryu, flowing at the distance of
three yojans from Ayodhya.
Parvati requested Lord Mahadeva to narrate the divine tales of Vasudeva
Krishna. Lord Mahadeva replied--Vasudev was the descendant of yadu. His
father was Devameedha. He was married to Devaki--the daughter of
Ugrasena.Ugrasena also had a mighty son named Kansa. Kansa was extremely
affectionate towards his sister Devaki. After her marriage, while Devaki
was going to her husband's house on a chariot being driven by Kansa,
suddenly a heavenly voice was heard.
'Kansa, you would meet death at the hands of Devaki's eighth son.'
Kansa became very scarred and wanted to kill his sister then and there.
But, Vasudev requested Kansa to spare Devaki's life and promised to hand
over any child that she gave birth to. Thus Kansa imprisoned both
Vasudev and Devaki.In course of time, Devaki gave birth to seven sons
and Kansa killed each of them. Lord Sri Hari manifested himself when
Devaki conceived for the eighth time. It was the month of Shravan and
the day was 'Krishna-ashtami' when Sri Hari took his incarnation at
midnight. Soon after taking his incarnation he gave a glimpse of his
divine form to Vasudev and Devaki. On the instruction of Sri Hari,
Vasudeva carried the infant to Nand's house. He had no problem in moving
out of the prison as all the guards had fallen asleep due to the
illusion of Sri Hari.
On seeing the swift currents of overflooded yamuna, Vasudev became
worried. But the level of river Yamuna receded as soon as Sri Krishna
touched the river with his feet. Sheshnag protected Sri Krishna from
heavy rain with his thousand hoods. When Vasudev reached Nand's house he
found that Nand's wife-- Yashoda had given birth to a baby girl. Yashoda
was sleeping at that time and Vasudev had no problem in exchanging Sri
Krishna with that baby girl. Vasudev then returned to the prison and
laid down the baby girl beside Devaki.
started crying and the guards immediately woke up. They informed Kansa
about the birth of Devaki's eighth child. Kansa tried to kill that baby
girl by smashing her head, but she escaped from his hands and flew up in
the sky. She thundered---'Your death is certain as your assasin has
already taken birth.' Kansa was terrified at the prospect of his death.
He instructed his soldiers to kill all the infants' whereever they were
to be found in his kingdom. He also ordered the release of Vasudev and
Devaki, as there was no point keeping them in captivity.Meanwhile, Sri
Krishna grew up under the guardianship of Nand and Yashoda.
One day Kansa sent a wicked ogress named Putna to kill Sri Krishna.
Putma had applied poison on her breasts and tried to kill Krishna by
breast-feeding him. Sri Krishna sucked her breast with such ferocity
that she died. Thus, Sri Krishna gave the first glimpse of his divinity
to the inhabitants of Vajra.Sri Krishna accomplished many such divine
deeds during his childhood. He grew up to be a mischieveous child and
used to play numerous pranks on the fellow Gopis. He used to steal their
butter and curd. One day, all the Gopis complained to Yashoda about Sri
Krishna's misdeeds. Yashoda became angry and tied him with a
wooden-mortar in order to prevent him from troubling the Gopis. She then
placed that mortar between two trees so that Krishna could not move.
But, Sri Krishna toddled away uprooting both the huge trees.
Once, a demon named Bakasur disguised himself as a huge heron and tried
to kill Sri Krishna. But, Sri Krishna hit him with a stone with such
force that he met an instant death.This way Sri Krishna had killed many
ferocious demons while he was still a small child. Some of them well
Kaliya--the serpent etc, Dhenukasur, Arisht, Keshi etc. A significant
incident had occurred during Krishna's childhood. People of Vraja were
devotees of Indra and used to worship him. Sri Krishna stopped this
tradition and encouraged people to worship Govardhan mountain. Indra
became extremely furious and caused incessant rain for one week. Sri
Krishna protected the people by lifting Govardhan mountain and shielding
them from the continuous downpour.At last, Indra accepted defeat and
eulogized Sri Krishna.
Continuing with the divine tales of Sri Krishna, Lord Mahadeva told
Parvati--When Kansa failed in his repeated attempts to kill Sri Krishna,
he instructed 'Akrura' to invite both Krishna and Balaram to Mathura on
the pretext of attending a ceremony called Dhanush-yagya. Kansa had
planned to kill Sri Krishna by deceitful means.Akrura was a great
devotee of Sri Krishna and was aware of Kansa's evil intentions. But, he
had no other option but to follow the command of his master-Kansa. So,
Akrura went to Vraja where Sri Krishna and Balaram used to live.
Sri Krishna and Balaram were delighted to meet Akrura. After the formal
exchange of pleasantaries, Krishna took Akrura to his home. Akrura
conveyed the instructions of Kansa to Nanda and requested him to send
both Sri Krishna and Balaram to Mathura. Akrura said--'Sri Krishna is
the incarnation of Lord Vishnu and Kansa will be killed by him.'Nanda
and Yashoda were reluctant to send Sri Krishna to Mathura but Sri
Krishna convinced them, Ultimately. Akrura returned to Mathura
accompanied by Krishna and Balaram. The people of Vraja became sad when
the time for Krishna's departure to Mathura arrived.
When Akrura reached Mathura accompanied by Sri Krishna and Balaram it
was already evening. Sri Krishna saw a dyer with colourful apparels
going towards Kansa's palace. Sri Krishna playfully demanded some set of
clothes from that dyer which he refused to give. Sri Krishna was
infuriated and slapped him so hard that he started vomiting blood. In a
short time the dyer was dead. Sri Krishna and Balaram chose some
beautiful set of clothes for themselves and proceeded towards the palace
of Kansa. After sometime they met a crooked woman carrying
'sandal-wood-paste'. Sri Krishna demanded some sandal wood paste from
her, which she gave without any hesitation. Sri Krishna blessed that
crooked woman as a result of which she was cured of her
At last, both Sri Krishna and Balaram reached the oblation--site where
'Dhanush-yagya' was suppossed to be performed. Sri Krishna lifted the
divine bow kept there and broke it into two pieces.When Kansa learnt
that the divine bow had been broken, he ordered Chaanur to kill Krishna
in a wrestling-bout. Kansa also fortified his palace by positioning wild
elephants and mighty warriors at all the entrance-points.Sri Krishna and
Balaram spent the night at the oblation-site. In the morning both of
them proceeded towards the palace. Sri Krishna found an elephant named
Kuvalyapeeda standing at the main entrance of the palace. He killed that
ferocious elephant without much difficulty.
Sri Krishna and
Balaram then entered the gymnasium where wrestling-bouts were supposed
to take place. All the demons those who had witnessed Sri Krishna
killing that huge elephant without any problem, became terrified and
fled away from the gymnasium. Sri Krishna and Balaram entered the
chamber of Kansa. Kansa became terrified and ordered his trusted
lientenants--Chanur and Mushtik to kill Krishna.Chanur confronted Sri
Krishna while Mushtik fought a duel with Balaram. Ultimately, both the
demons were killed after a fierce duel. Now, Kansa was left all alone,
Sri Krishna pulled Kansa from the throne where he was sitting and
slapped him so hard that he fell down on the ground. The injury proved
to be fatal and as a result Kansa died. Balaram also killed Kansa's
younger brother whose named was Sunama.
After killing Kansa, Krishna and Balaram went to meet their
parents--Vasudev and Devaki. They also freed their maternal grandfather-
Ugrasena who had been imprisioned by Kansa. At last they appointed
Ugrasena as the king of Mathura.
Jarasandh was the
father-in-law of Kansa. When he learnt about Kansa' death he surrounded
Mathura with a huge army. Sri Krishna was well aware of Jarasandh's
might and bravery. He was also convinced that it would not be easy to
defeat Jarasandh. So, he remembered Daruk--his eternal charioteer and
sought his help. Daruk appeared with a divine chariot named
Sugreeva--pushpak. The chariot was well armed with all the divine
weapons of lord Vishnu.
Sri Krishna and Balaram then entered the battlefied mounted on that
divine chariot. A fierce battle was fought between Sri Krishna and
Jarasandh's army. Jarasandh covered Krishna chariot with his various
weapons but Sri Krishna destroyed them with his 'Chakra'. Sri Krishna
then destroyed Jarasandh's army by showering volley of arrows from his
famous bow--Sharang. Seeing the death and destruction in his army,
Jarasandh came forward to fight Balaram.
Balaram attacked Jarasandh with his dangerous weapon--Hala (plough) and
destroyed his chariot. Jarasandh fell down on the ground and as Balaram
was about to kill him Sri Krishna requested Balaram not to kill
Jarasandh. After being defeated, Jarasandh sought the help of Kaalyan,
who had a large army. Kaalyavan agreed to help Jarasandh and surrounded
Mathura with his army.
Realizing that Mathura was no longer a safe place to live, Sri Krishna
shifted the whole population of Mathura to Dwarka and went to fight
Kaalyavan. The battle continued for a long period and after realizing
that it was not easy to defeat his enemy, Sri Krishna, ran towards the
cave where 'Muchkund' had been sleeping since many past eras. Muchkund
was blessed with a boon according to which any person upon whom he put
his glance after woking from his sleep would die. Krishna hid himself
behind Muchkund. Kaalyavan, who was chasing Krishna, entered the cave
and kicked Muchkund. Muchkund opened his eyes and saw Kaalyavan.
Kaalyavan was burnt to ashes. This way, Sri Krishna was able to defeat
his powerful enemy by his cleverness.
Lord Mahadeva told
Parvati--- When Jarasandh learnt about Kaalyavan's death, he attacked
Balaram to avenge his friend's death. But, very soon he realized that it
was beyond his capacity to defeat Balaram, so he retreated alongwith his
army. Sri Krishna and Balaram returned to Dwarka.In course of time,
Balaram married Revati--the daugher of Raivat. At that time, there ruled
a king named Bheeshmak. He ruled over Vidarbha. He had a beautiful
daughter named Rukmini. He also had many sons among whom Rukmi was
Rukmi wanted Rumini to get married to Shishupal much against her wishes.
Rukmini being an incarnation of goddess laxmi rightly wanted o have Sri
Krishna as her husband.Rukmini sent a message to Sri Krishna about her
brother's intention. Sri Krishna went to help her, accompanied by
Balaram.Sri Krishna reached Vidarbha on the same day, Rukmini was
supposed to marry Shishupal and abducted her to Dwarka. Jarasandh and
Rukmi chased Krishna's chariot but Balaram defeated Jarasandh while Sri
Krishna fastened Rukmi with the chariot. Sri Krishna also shaved off
Rukmi's hair, which filled him with so much of shame that he decided not
to return to Vidarbha.After reaching Dwarka, Sri Krishna married Rukmini
on an auspicious day.
Continuing with the divine tales of Sri Krishna, Lord Mahadeva told
Parvati--Sri Krishna had 16 thousand queens among whom Satyabhama,
Kalindi, Mitravinda, etc. were prominent.King Sattajit had a priceless
diamond named--Syamantak, which he had presented to his younger
brother--Prasena. Sri Krishna was fascinated by that diamond and
demanded it from Prasena, which he refused to part with.
One day, Sri Krishna alongwith Prasena and other yadavas went into the
forest for hunting. While chasing a deer, Prasena seceded from his group
and was killed by a lion. The lion took the diamond and started playing
with it. Incidentally, Jambavan--who had once fought along with Sri Ram
against Ravana, saw the lion playing with the diamond. He killed that
lion and took the diamond in his possession.
When Sri Krishna returned to Dwarka, he was surprised by a strange
rumour, which pervaded the whole city. Some people suspected that Sri
Krishna had killed Prasena for the diamond.Sri Krishna was very much
distributed by this baseless rumour. To clear the doubts, he went into
the forest accompanied by all the residents of Dwarka and showed the
dead body of Prasena, which was still lying there. When people saw the
mutilated corpse of Prasena, which bore marks of the lion's claws and
canines, they became convinced of Sri Krishna's innocense.
While returning back to Dwarka, Sri Krishna saw an effulgent cave. Sri
Krishna was very surprised and wanted to find out the source of light.
He entered the cave and saw Prasena's diamond hanging on top of a
cradle, in which a child was lying. A woman was singing a lulaby so that
the child falls asleep---'The lion killed Prasena while Jambavan killed
the lion and acquired this diamond from its possession. O child! Don't
cry as this priceless diamond belongs to your father.'Sri Krishna
furiously blew his conch. Jambavan came out from the cave after
listening to the sound of the conch. A fierce duel took place between
them, which continued for ten days. At last, Jambavan realized that the
person against whom he was fighting was none other than Sri Ram himself.
Jambhavan then gave his daughter--Jambavati to Krishna in marriage and
gave lot of wealth as dowry including that 'Syamantak' diamond.
Bhadraraj had three daughters--Sulakshamana, Nagnajiti and Susheela. Sri
Krishna had married all three of them in a 'Swayamwara'. This way, Sri
Krishna had altogether eight prominent queen consorts--Rukmini,
Satyabhama, Kalindi, Mitravinda, Jambavati, Nagnajiti, Sulakshamana and
There lived a
mighty demon named Narakasur. He had defeated the deities and snatched
the divine earrings of Aditi--the mother of deities. He had created an
aerial city in which he lived alongwith other demons. The deities went
to Sri Krishna and sought his help. Sri Krishna flew up in the sky
mounted on the back of Garuda. Satyabhama was also accompanying him. Sri
Krishna was amazed to see the well fortified palace of Narakasur. When
the demons saw Srikrishna, they attacked him but Sri Krishna challenged
them by blowin his conch. Narakasur came forward to fight Sri Krishna. A
fierce battle took place in which Sri Krishna broke Narakasur's bow with
his arrows. Ultimately, Sri Krishna was successful in killing Narakasur.
Sri Krishna then returned the whole wealth to the deities, which
Narakasur had looted from them. He also liberated sixteen thousand women
whom Narakasur had imprisoned. After being liberated all the women
accepted Sri Krishna as their husband.
continued with the divine tales of Sri Krishna--O Parvati! Sri Krishna
had a son from Rukmini whose name was 'Aniruddha'. Aniruddha was very
brave and had killed a demon named Shambasur. There is an interesting
tale how Aniruddha married Usha.
Once, Usha--the daughter of Bangur, saw a very handsome young man in her
dreams. She was so infatuated by his handsome personality that she
developed a deep desire of marrying him. When she woke up next morning,
she expressed her desire to her companion--Chitralekha.Chitralekha was
an accomplished painter. She drew a sketch of a handsome man as per the
descriptions of Usha. When the painting was ready, Chitralekha revealed
to Usha that the preson who she had seen in her dream was none other
Chitralekha had divine powers. She went to Dwarka and abducted Aniruddha
while he was asleep. She then carried the sleeping Aniruddha and laid
him on the bed of Usha.When Usha woke up, She was thrilled to see the
man of her dreams. Aniruddha remained there for many days without
Banasur being aware of his presence.One day, Banasur came to know about
Aniruddhas' presence. He became furious and imprisoned Aniruddha.Sage
Narad informed Sri Krishna about Aniruddha's imprisonment. Sri Krishna
went to fight a battle against Banasur and release Aniruddha from his
imprisonment. Although Sri Krishna was leading a large army and was
accompanied by mighty warriors like Baldeva and Pradyumna yet he was
aware that it was not easy to fight Banasur who had one thousand arms
and whom Lord Shiva had vowed to protect.
A fierce battle commenced between the armies of Sri Krishna and Lord
Shiva. But the battle remained indecisive for a long time. Meanwhile,
Banasur came forward to fight against Sri Krishna.Very soon Sri Krishna
severed all the thousand hands of Banasur with his 'chakra'. Lord Shiva
then requested Sri Krishna to spare Banasur's life and said -'Banasur
has received the boon of immortality from me. Now, only you can protect
the dignity of my boon given to him.' Sri Krishna spared Banasur's life.
Banasur then agreed to marry his daughter to Aniruddha. This way
Aniruddha married Usha with great fanfare.
Parvati was listening to the divine tales of Sri Krishna with rapt
attention. Lord Mahadeva told Parvati-- 'Paundrak was the king of Kashi.
He did an austere penance for twelve years to please me. When I appeared
before him, he requested me to make his appearance look like Sri
Krishna. I blessed him with an appearance similar to that of Sri
Krishna. People became confused as to who the real Krishna was.
One day, Narad arrived at Kashi and castigated Paundrak by saying that
his intention of befooling people would not meet success as long as real
Krishna was alive. Paundrak went to Dwarka with a large army and
challenged Sri Krishna for a duel. Sri Krishna severed the
impersonator's head with his chakra. Meanwhile, Jarasandh continued to
torment the yadavas. Sri Krishna decided to settle the matter for once
and all. He advised Bheema to challenge Jarasandh for a wrestling-bout.
Jarasandh and Bheema fought valiantly for 27 days. While both of them
were fighting, Sri Krishna signalled Bheema to tear apart Jarasandh's
thighs. After the killing of Jarasandh, Sri Krishna released all the
kings who had been imprisoned by him. After the great war of Mahabharat
had ended, Yudhishthir decided to perform a Rajasuya-yagya at
Indraprashth. Sri Krishna also went there to bless the Pandavas.
Shishupal was also present at the ceremony. He had an old grudge against
Sri Krishna and started abusing him. Initially Krishna tried to overlook
his abuses but when situation went beyond repair Sri Krishna severed his
head with his chakra.
attacked Mathura to avenge the death of Shishupal. A long battle was
fought at the bank of river yamuna, which continued for many days.
Ultimately, Sri Krishna was successful in killing Dantavaktra with his
mace. There was a childhood friend of Sri Krishna whose name was Sudama.
He was a poor brahmin. Once, he went to meet Sri Krishna. Sri Krishna,
being an incarnation of the almighty immediately understood the
precarious situation his poor friend was living in. He blessed Sudama as
a result of which he got rid of his poverty and became prosperous. Sri
Krishna had one crore sons from his sixteen thousand queens. Pradyumna
was his eldest son. The yadavas dominated the whole earth and had become
arrogant after being intoxicated by their power. There is an interesting
tale how this powerful yadava dynasty met their downfall --
Once, some young yadavas played a prank with Sage Kanva, which caused
the downfall of the Yadavas. One day, some Yadva children went at the
bank of river Narmada where sage Kanva was doing penance. Samba was one
of those Yadava children. He disguised himself as a pregnant woman by
keeping a pestle under his clothes. All the yadava children then went
near Sage Kanva and asked him as to when was the pregnant woman supposed
to deliver a child.Sage Kanva furiously cursed them that the whole clan
of yadavas would be liquidated because of that very pestle. All the
children were scarred and told Sri Krishna about the mistake they had
made. Sri Krishna ordered that the iron pestle be crushed to powder and
be thrown into a pond. But, that was not the end of the matter, as long
reeds grew all around the pond. The reeds had very sharp edges. A fish
swallowed a small part of that iron pestle and was subsequently caught
by a fowler, who retrieved that iron-piece from the fish and fixed it on
the top of his arrow.
In course of time all the Yadavas developed enemity among themselves and
killed each other with those sharp-edged reeds. Once, Sri Krishna was
taking rest under the shade of 'Kalpa' tree. The fowler mistook his pink
foot to be that of a deer and pierced it with his arrow. When the fowler
arrived at the spot he found Sri Krishna in an injured condition. The
fowler regretted his action and begged for Sri Krishna's pardon. Sri
Krishna consoled the fowler by saying that he had committed no crime.
Meanwhile, Daruk arrived there on his chariot. Sri Krishna instructed
Daruk to call Arjuna as soon as possible. Arjuna arrived at the site
within a short time. Sri Krishna told Arjuna--'The time for my final
departure has arrived. Please call all my eight queen consorts.'
towards Dwarka to summon the queens but Sri Krishna had already left for
his heavenly abode before he could come back with the queens. Arjuna
informed the queens about Sri Krishna's injury. In a short time the news
spread like a wild fire and all the residents of Dwarka rushed towards
the site of incident. After reaching there, the eight queen consorts of
Krishna found that their beloved husband had already departed. All of
them gave up their lives and united with Sri Krishna. The great Yadavas
like Vasudev, Ugrasena and Akrur followed suit. Balaram could not bear
the sorrow caused by Sri Krishna's separation and he gave up his life.
His wife--Revati entered the burning pyre with her husband's body in her
lap. Similarly all the rest of Sri Krishna's family members like Rukmi's
daughter, Pradyumna, Usha and Aniruddha left for heavenly abode.
Arjuna performed the last rite of all the dead Yadavas.Eventually,
Dwaraka got submerged into the ocean. Thus, Sri Krishna after having
liberated the earth from all the sinners left his mortal body. After
completing his story Lord Mahadeva told Parvati that Sri Krishna takes
incarnation whenever there is predominance of sin or sinners. He also
revealed to her that Sri Krishna would incarnate as Kalki at the fag end
of Kalkiyuga to liquidate the 'mlechchhas'.
the rituals connected with the worship of lord Vishnu, lord Mahaddeva
told Parvati-- A devotee can worship Lord Vishnu by making his idol.
This mode of worship is known as 'Sthapita' (installation of an idol).
There are also some sacred places related with lord Vishnu which are
called 'Swayam-Vyakata' (self manifested) like Indradyumna Sarovar, (Kurma
sthan), Kashi, Prayag, Dwarka, Naimisharanya, Mathura etc. In all these
holy places, Lord Vishnu had manifested himself. A devotee should get up
early in the morning and perform 'aachaman'. He should then chant the
holy name of Lord Vishnu. He should take his bath and sit down to
worship Lord Vishnu.
A devotee should install idols of Laxmi-Narayana on a beautiful pedestal
and adorn it with flowers. He should then make offerings of various
articles like akshat, fruits, flowers, etc. to the deity. While
worshipping, it is most necessary that a devotee followes the rituals as
mentioned in the ancient scriptures like Shruti, Smriti, Vedas etc. He
should chant the shlokas of Purush-Sukta as well as the cryptic mantra
for the accomplishment of 'Shodashopachar'. He should light a ghee lamp
and make offerings of articles like camphor and betel leaves to Lord
Vishnu. While making offerings in the sacrificial-fire, chanting of a
shloka either from Purushsukta or Shrisukta is madatory.
There are some specific days which are considered to be specially
auspicious for the worship of lord Vishnu--Amavasya, Saturday, Solar
eclipse, lunar eclipse etc.
Describing about the superiority of Lord Vishnu among the trinity Gods'
Sage Vashishth narrated the following tale--During ancient times,
Swayambhuva manu had once gone to Mandarachal mountain to perform a
yagya. Many scholars and learned men had come to attend that yagya. Very
soon, they got into a debate as to who was the supreme among all the
deities. Some of them eulogised the greatness of Brahma, while some said
that lord Shiva was the greatest of all the deities. Failing to come to
any conclusion all of them requested Sage Bhrigu to find out as to who
was the greatest among the trinity Gods.
Sage Bhrigu went to meet Lord Shiva at Kailash mountain. He saw Nandi
standing guard at the main entrance. Sage Bhrigu arrogantly ordered
Nandi to inform Lord Shiva of his arrival. Nandi refused to comply with
Bhrigu's command. Sage Bhrigu cursed Lord Shiva by saying--Your master-
Shiva, would bear the consequences of showing disrespect to me. From
today onwards people would make offerings of forbidden articles to him.'
Sage Bhrigu then went to meet Lord Brahma. After reaching Brahmaloka, he
made salutations to lord Brahma.Lord Brahma also did not give any
respect to Sage Bhrigu and neglected him. Sage Bhrigu became furious and
cursed Lord Brahma---'Being intoxicated by your Rajoguna, you have shown
disrespect to me. From today onwards people will not worhsip you.' Sage
Bhrigu then went to meet Lord Vishnu at his abode- Ksheersagar. He did
not have any problem in reaching the place where Lord Vishnu was taking
rest on Sheshnag, engrossed in his yoganidra. Goddess Laxmi was pressing
Vishnu's legs with total devotion. Sage Bhrigu kicked Lord Vishnu on his
chest. Lord Vishnu woke up and seeing sage Bhrigu said---'O Great
Brahmin! Your tender foot must have got hurt because of my chest, which
is as hard as Vajra. How blessed I am to have been touched by a
Lord Vishnu got up and eulogised Sage Bhrigu. This gesture of Lord
Vishnu made Sage Bhrigu cry in joy. Now, he was convinced as to who was
the supreme among all the three deities.Sage Bhrigu returned to
Mandarachal mountain where all the sages were anxiously waiting for him.
'Lord Brahma is the
possesser of Rajoguna, while Lord Shiva possesses tamoguna. Only Lord
Vishnu is the proud possessor of Satvaguna and hence He is the supreme
among all three of them.' After finishing his tale, Sage Vashishth told
the sages that anybody who worships Lord Vishnu with complete faith and
total devotion become liberated from all his sins. A devotee of Lord
Vishnu attains to Vishnu Loka after his death.
Describing Lord Vishnu's
incarnation as Parshuram, Lord Mahadeva told Parvati--Sage Jamadagni
came from the lineage of Bhrigu. He had pleased Indra by his tremendous
penance and received Surabhi cow in return. In course of time he married
the daughter of king Renuk whose name was Renuka. A child was born to
them, who was named 'Ram' by Sage Bhrigu. The child was also known as 'Jamadganya'
because of Jamdagni.
After growing up, Ram became proficient in all the scriptures. He also
mastered various weaponaries. One day, the king of Haihaya named Arjun
arrived at the hermitage of Jamadagni. Sage Jamdagni treated the king
with due honour and respect. He presented numerous gifts to the king.
Arjun wanted nothing else but the Surabhi--cow from Sage Jamdagni which
he was unwilling to part away with. Ultimately, Arjun forcibly took away
the divine cow. The cow was unwilling to go alongwith Arjun and she
attacked his army with her sharp horns. As a result, Arjun's whole army
was liquidated within no time.The revengeful Arjun killed Jamadagni. At
the time of this incident. Ram was not present in the hermitage.
Ram wanted to avenge his father's death and did a tremendous penance to
please Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu became pleased by his devotion and
presented many divine weapons to him. The weapons included the famous
axe--Parshu and Vaishnav-bow. After acquiring Parshu from Lord Vishnu,
Ram became famous as Parshuram. He had vowed to kill all the Kshatriyas,
which he did only, the clan of Ikshavaku was spared by him as he had
promised his mother that he would not harm Ikshavaku and his clan.
After freeing the earth from the terror of Kshatriyas, Parshuram
performed an Ashwamedha yagya and donated his whole kingdom, to the
brahmins. He then went to do penance at the hermitage of Nar-Narayan.
END OF PADMA PURAN