Saturday, 12 October 2013

Brahmananda Purana Part 8

Today is the Eighth Night of The Divine Mother's Nine Nights -

Day 8 - The eighth potency of mother Durga is Mahagauri. Her complexion is extremely fair. So it is similarised with the conch, moon and Kunda flower. She is supposed to be eight year old always -

All her garments and ornaments are also white. She has four arms. Her vehicle is a bullock. Her right upper hand is in the pose of allaying fear and right lower hand holds a trident in it. The left upper hand holds a Damaru and the lower one is in the pose of granting boon. Her appearance is very calm and serene.

In her Parvati form she practiced severest possible penance with a desire to have Lord Siva as her divine consort. She took a vow.

Due to the severe penances her body became black. Lord Siva was pleased in the end. He himself washed her body with the holy water of Ganga. Then her complexion was changed into a shining one like a lightning flash. Since then she was known as Mahagauri.

The worship of Mahagauri is recommended for the eighth day of Navaratra Puja. Her power is unfailing and instantly fruitful. All sins of devotees are washed away with the result of her worship. Even accumulated sins get destroyed and in future no sins or sufferings come to him. He gets purified in all respects and becomes fit for inexhaustible virtues.

The meditation or remembrance or worship of Mahagauri is benedictory for the devotees in every respect. We should always meditate upon her. Divine Siddhis are obtained from her grace. A devotee should always meditate on her lotus-feet single-mindedly. She definitely removes the pains of her devotee. As a result of her worship the afflicted devotees get even impossible done possible. So, everybody should try by all means to get shelter under her feet. The Puranas are replete with the narrations glorifying her. She channels the thought waves of the devotees towards the path of the virtue and destroys Asat.

Below is a part translation of one of my favourite sacred texts -

Brahmananda Purana - 8

The Sons of Sagara - The Sacrificial Horse is let loose

Jaimini Said:

1. " After banishing his son, the virtuous-souled Lord Sagara transferred his love for him to the child Amsumam whose conduct was righteous.

2. At the very same time, O king, the sons of' Sumati grew up collectively. All of them were amiable, devoted and faithful to one another.

3. They had adamantine bodies. They were cruel, merciless and shameless. They were habitually evil in their activities. They had the same nature and characteristics.

4. They cooperated in doing simultaneously the same work. They were deluded in their minds. They were easily irritable. They could not be easily assailed by any living being. They regularly harassed the people.

5. They had no concern for humility, good conduct or the path of virtue. They harassed the entire world around as they pleased, like Asuras.

6. Attacked and tormented by them, the whole world became distressed and unhappy in particular with Yaj├▒as and paths of virtue destroyed. The people could not have their regular selfstudy of the Vedas nor could they perform holy rites by uttering the Vasatkara mantra.

7. When everything was being completely destroyed by the sons of Sagara who were haughty on account of' the boons they had been granted, the Devas, Asuras and the grreat serpents became extremely agitated.

8. The Earth, overwhelmed by the ocean, began to quake though its name is Acala ( immovable ). There was a break and hindrance in the penance and abstract iiwditation of the ascetics.

9. Depraved of the Havya and Kayva offerings, the Devas and the Pitris became oppressed by great sorrow. They went to the abode of Brahma.

10. After going there, the Devas with Sharva* ( probably Shakra ) at their head, duly reported to him the entire activities of the sons of Sagara.

11. On hearing their words, Brahma, the grandfather of the worlds, became engrossed in thought for a short while. The most excellent one among the Suras then said:

12. 0 Devas, listen, attentively to my words. Welfare unto you. There is no doubt that the sons of Sagara will be destroyed ere long.

13. Wait for a short time. Everything is being controlled by time. Everything else is but an instrumental. That time alone is the master of all.

14. Hence, O excellent Suras, what I am going to say for your welfare should now be carried out by all of you without any slackness.

15. The holy lord Kapila, the most excellent among victorious ones, the roost exalted among the leading Yogins, is born on the earth with a partial power of Visnu, for the welfare of the universe.

16. He is now sitting, meditating in a lonely place somewhere in the ocean, the water of which had been sucked up by Agastya. This meditation has been going on for the last hundred years according to the reckoning of heaven dwellers.

17. At my behest, all of you go to the leading sage Kapila. Stand near him wishing for the conclusion of his meditation.

18. At the close of his abstract meditation, you will bow down to him and tell him your purpose in full. He will do what is conducive to your welfare.

19. O excellent Devas, do something whereby a break in the abstract meditation of the sage can be caused through the sons of Sagara". Jaimini said:

20. On being told thus by him, the Devas bowed down to Brahma and went to Kapila, the most excellent among the brahmanas; with palms joined in reverence, they spoke to him. The Devas said:

21. Be pleased with us, oh excellent sage. We have sought refuge in you. The whole of the universe, harassed by the sons of Sagara, is perishing.

22. It is well known that you are the cause of the sustenance and annihilation of the worlds. With the partial power of Vishnu, you have incarnated on the earth and you stay here as the leading Yogin.

23. A physical body has been voluntarily assumed by you, only for the destruction of the great distress of men afflicted by the three types of agony. Indeed, you are the most excellent among those who perform austerities.

24. Undoubtedly, O Brahmana, you are capable, at your will, to mentally, create the entire universe, sustain it and annihilate it.

25. You are our creator and dispenser of our destiny. You are our preceptor. You are our greatest resort. You are our protector. Put an end to our adversity.

26. O leading Brahmana, be the resort and refuge of the leading Brahmanas in particular, who reside in the three worlds and who are being persecuted by the sons of Sagara.

27. Indeed, the activities of people like you will be of Satva ( very good ) nature. Hence, O sage of good holy rites, it behooves you to save us and all the world.

28-31a. If not, O holy saint, the entire universe will be destroyed prematurely." Jaimini Said: " On being told thus by all the Devas, Kapila slowly opened his eyes. Glancing at there, he spoke these pleasing words ' Utterly burned by their own actions, the sons of Sagara will surely perish when the proper time arrives. Let that time be awaited by you all. For the achievement of your purpose, O excellent Suras, I shall become the cause of destruction of those evilminded ones.'

31-33. Ere long, the sons of Sagara, whose minds are inclined towards sinful activities and whose intellects have been adversely affected by Kala ( Time, God of Death ) will be burned by the fire of my anger. Hence, 0 Devas, all the worlds shall be rid of distress. They will have fear from nowhere. Let them ( sons of Sagara ) be wicked in their actions. They will quickly meet with their annihilation. So be free from fear and go back to your own city. Wait for some time. Thereafter, you will realise what you desire."

34-38. On being told thus by Kapila, all those Devas including Indra, became delighted. After bowing down to him they went towards heaven. In the meantime, king Sagara, the Lord of the Earth desired to perform Vajimedha (HorseSacrifice), the great Yajna. With the permission of Vasistha, he gathered together all the necessary requisites. Accompanied by Aurva and other Brahmanas he duly took the initiation for the performance of sacrifice. For the purpose of letting the horse roam about, the king of great renown called all his sons and commanded them thus: O my sons, make the horse roam about all round the earth. It behoves you to do this immediately and bring it back to me." Jaimini said:

39-43. " At the behest of their father they took the horse and made it wander over the entire earth. It was only because of the directive of the Vedic injunction that the horse was made to go round the earth and not for the conquest of the quarters nor for levying taxes and tributes as the whole of the earth had already been conquered by that king. Kings had already been made payers of tributes by that king of exalted heroism in the battlefield. Then those princes reached the lower ground surface of the salt ocean wherein there was no water. With great delight they encircled the horse and entered the interior of the earth.

The Destruction of the Sons of Sagara

Jamini Said:

1. When they reached there, the wind god who had been directed by Indra, carried away the horse to the netherworlds within a moment.

2. Stealing the horse without being seen by any of them, O king, the wind god carried it away along that path to the vicinity of sage Kapila.

3-4. When the horse disappeared, all those princes became perplexed. Searching for the horse, they went 'round and 'round the earth. After searching the entire earth including the cities, mountains and forests, they attained great sorrow because they were still unable to see the sacrificial animal.

5. Then they went back to Ayodhya, surrounded by the sagas, met their father, bowed down to him and initiated to him everything.

6. " The moment we entered the ocean after wandering over the whole of the earth, the horse was taken away by some one though it was being vigilantly guarded by us who were on the watch."

7-8. On being told thus by them the excellent king became infuriated and told them " Go away hence, unrighteous ones, never to return again. How was it lost by you, while you were alive. You were indeed evil minded ones. There is no question of your returning without the horse here".

9. Then all of them together setout from that place and said to one another: " Even now the horse is not to be seen, what shall we do ?"

10. The whole of the earth was searched by us, including the mountains, forests and parks. The horse is not seen anywhere nor its news is heard.

(to be continued tomorrow ... :)

Happy Navratris !!

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