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Chapter I
On Tris’irā’s austerities

1-12. The Risis (of the Naimisa forest) addressed Sûta (fondly):-- O highly Fortunate One! Your nectar-like words are very sweet. We are not satiated with what you have described to us as the auspicious sayings of Dvaipāyana Vyāsa. O Sûta! We desire to ask you again to narrate to us the auspicious sayings of this Purāna, beautiful, famous, and sin-destroying and authorised by the holy Vedas. Vis'vakarmā had a son, named Vritrāsura, who was very well known, and very powerful. How was it that he had been slain by the high-souled Indra? Vis'vakarmā was a powerful Brāhmin and belonged to the gods' party; his son was stronger. How was it that he had been killed by Indra! The Devas are born of the Sattva qualities; men are born from the Rājasic qualities; and all the birds, etc., are born of the Tāmasic qualities. This is the opinion of the Pundits, versed in the Purānas and Āgamas. But in this act of slaying Vritrāsura, a great contradiction arises; for the powerful Vritra was killed merely under a pretext by Indra, the performer of the hundred sacrifices, and endowed with Sattva qualities. And Indra was prompted to do so by Visnu, the head of those who possess Sattva qualities; while Visnu himself entered in disguise into the thunderbolt so that he could kill Vritra. The powerful Vritra entered into a treaty and kept himself peaceful when Indra and Visnu violated truth and treacherously killed him by Jalaphena (the watery foams). O Sûta! The great wonder is this:-- That Indra and Visnu turned out so bold as to forsake the truth. This, then, is therefore very clear that the high souled persons become deluded and act sinfully. The Heads of the Devas act very wrongly; they are reckoned as polite simply because they observe the mere outward forms of good conduct as approved by the S'āstras. How can the mere observance of outward forms constitute politeness? Had Indra, who killed in disguise Vritra relying on his words, to suffer any punishment for the sin that he incurred in killing a Brāhmana? It was told by you before that Vritra had been slain by the Devī Bhagavatī; but the general belief is that Indra killed him. Our minds are puzzled on this point. (So clear our doubts on this point.)

13-14. Sûta said:-- O Munis! Hear the incident of the killing of Vritrāsura and the punishment that Indra had to suffer due to his sin of Brahmahatyā (killing a Brāhmin). This question was asked by the King Pāriksit and replied by Vyāsa, the son of Satyavatī. I will tell you what Vyāsa had told before.

15-18. Janamejaya asked:-- O Best of Munis! How was it that in former days Indra, endowed with the Sattva qualities, killed Vritrāsura, with the aid of Visnu? And how and why was it that he was killed again by the Goddess Bhagavatī? O Lord of Munis! How could one body be killed by the two; our curiosity has been excited to hear the truth. What man is there that does not like to hear any more of the glorious deeds of the high-souled persons! Kindly narrate to us the slaying of Vritra by the Devī Bhagavatī.

19-26. Vyāsa said:-- O King! You are blessed, since your taste to hear the events of Purāna has grown so much; the Devas even get their thirst for drinking nectar; but when quenched, they do not like to drink any more. O King! Your name and fame are widely spread. Your Bhakti (devotion) to the Purānas is growing more and more daily. A speaker gets very much delighted when his audience hears him with undivided attention. O Lord of the earth! The fight between Vritra and Vāsava that occurred in days of yore is famous in the passages of the Vedas and the Purānas; as well as the suffering that Indra had to encounter as his punishment when he had killed the innocent son of Visvakarma. O King! The Munis, who fear sin very much, commit yet blameable acts under Māyā; then what wonder is there that Visnu, and Indra would kill Tris'irā and Vritra merely under a plea. When Visnu, the incarnate of Sattva qualities, gets deluded by Māyā and kills deceitfully the Daityas always, then how can you expect any other man to conquer mentally even the Maha Māyā Bhavāni, Who deludes all the beings! O King! It is under the compulsion of this Māyā that the Bhagavān, the Infinite, the friend of Nara, Nārāyana, takes incarnations in thousands and thousands of Yugas in this Samsāra as Fish, etc., and does deeds sometimes lawful and sometimes unlawful. The Devas and men, being confounded by his Māyā, become upset and disordered and say “that this body, wealth, house, sons, wife and relatives are all mine” and being thus deluded sometimes do virtuous and sometimes sinful deeds. O King! There is not even one, on the surface of this earth, though he may be well versed in finding out cause and effect, the knowledge of the high and low, that can be free from this Great Delusion; he is from the very beginning tied up by the three Gunas of this Māyā and that remains under Her control.

27-35. This explains that Visnu and Indra both were deluded by Māyā and engaged in fulfilling their own selfish ends. They killed Vritrās'ûra under a pretext. O King! Hear! I am now describing to you the cause of enmity between lndra and Vritra. Vis'vakarmā, the Prajāpati, was great architect of the Gods, he was skilled, he was superior amongst the gods, a great ascetic and endeared by the Brahmins. He had enmity with Indra; and out of this enmity he created a son, very beautiful named him Tris'iraska Visvarûpa. That son had three faces very beautiful and lovely. Visvarûpa performed three different functions with his three different faces; with one, he used to study the Vedas, with the second he used to drink nectar (wine), and with the third he used to see simultaneously all the directions. Tris'irā renounced the pleasures of the world and began to practise a hard tapasyā; he became a great ascetic, gentle, restrained in his passions and entirely devoted to his religion. He practised Panchāgni-Sādhan in the summer season, tying his feet upwards on the branch of a tree with his head downwards; he remained in dew in the cold season, under water in the winter season. Thus he abstained from food and conquered his self and, forsaking all the worldly connections, practised a very hard tapasyā; very difficult, indeed, for those who are of dull intellects.

36-49. Indra became very sad and dispirited to see him practise such a Tapasyā and thought of the means so that he might not acquire his Indraship. The Pākasās'ana Indra remained always very anxious see the energetic penance practised by that ascetic of unbounded glory and his steady attachment towards it. He thought thus:-- “This Tris'irā is becoming stronger day by day by his penance, so he will kill me. The wise never look an enemy with indifference whose strength daily becomes greater and greater.” It is now my urgent duty to invent means how to baffle his Tapasyā and he at last settled that lust is the great enemy of asceticism; the practice of devout austerities is destroyed complete by lust; so I must try this very day how the Muni becomes attached to worldly lust and enjoyments. The intelligent Indra, thinking thus, called the Apsarās Urvas'ī, Menakā, Rambhā, Ghritāchī, and Tilottamā and others proud of their beauties so that they might seduce Tri'sirā, the son of Vi'svakarmā. O Apsarās! I have now got a very grave task to fulfil; all of you help me in this respect. A great enemy of mine, difficult to conquer, is practising penance with his self-controlled. Start at once and with your dress suited to various amorous gestures and try hard to seduce him. Be all well with you; seduce him and remove the fever of my heart. O Apsarās! What more shall I say, I am restless since I have heard of his strength performing such hard austerities. O Weak Ones ! That powerful ascetic may acquire my place and thus dispossess me; this fear has possessed me. Therefore destroy my fear as quickly as possible. This is the task now given to you; get united and do this good to me. The Apsarās, hearing him, bowed down and said:-- “O Lord of the Devas! Do not be afraid! We will try our best to seduce him. O highly Lustrous One! For the enticing away of the Muni, we will do all the things, dancing, music and other amorous gestures and practices, that will discard your fear. O King of the Gods! We will unsettle the mind of the Muni by our side glances and passionate gestures and postures, delude and tie him and then bring him under our control.”

50-60. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Thus saying, the Apsarās went to Tris'irā and began to exhibit various amorous gestures and postures as stated in the Kāma Sāstra. They began to sing sometimes, sometimes to dance in tune with musical measures before the Muni. In short, they practised various amorous gestures to entice him away. But that ascetic, blazing with the fire of Tapas, did not notice even the Apsaras' various attempts; rather he kept all his senses under the control and remained like a deaf, dumb, and blind man. In that lovely hermitage of the Muni, the Apsarās sang and danced ravishingly and remained a few days there. But when they saw that the Muni Tris'irā did not swerve a bit from his meditative posture they returned tired, distressed to Indra and all, very fearful, began to address Indra with folded hands:-- “O King! We tried our best and we could not in any way make the Muni unsteady, very hard to surmount. O Pākas'asana! Please invent other means; we could not make the self-controlled Muni move away an inch from his position; it is our good luck that that high-souled Muni, an incarnate of blazing fire have not cursed us!” Then dismissing the Apsarās, the evil-minded and dull Indra began to devīse means, though totally unlawful, how to kill that good Muni. O King! That Indra abandoned all shame, and fear of sin and ultimately came to a highly blameable and sinful conclusion how to kill him.

Here ends the First Chapter of the Sixth Book on Tris'irā's austerities in S'rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam the Mahā Purānam, of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter II
On the birth of Vritrāsura

1-11. Vyāsa said:-- The extremely covetous Indra, then, mounted on his Airāvata elephant and determined to kill the Muni. He went to him and saw him immersed in deep Samādhi, firmly seated in his posture and with his speech controlled. At that time, a halo of light emanated from his body and he looked like a second Sun and a blazing fire. Indra became very sad and dejected when he saw that. Indra then thought within himself thus:-- “Oh! Can I slay this Muni, free from any vicious inclinations, and endowed with the power of Tapas, blazing like a fire! This is quite against the Dharma. But, Alas! He wants to usurp my position; how can I, then, neglect such an enemy?” Thus cogitating, Indra hurled at the Muni his swift going, infallible thunderbolt, the Muni remaining engaged in his penance and shining like the Sun and Moon. The ascetic, struck thus, fell on the ground and died, like a mountain peak struck by thunder falling on the ground and presenting a wondrous sight. Indra became very glad when he killed the Muni; but the other Munis then cried aloud:-- “Oh! We are killed! Alas! What a crime has Indra committed today! Oh! The vicious Indra has killed today this jewel amongst the Munis without any offence! Let, then, this sinner reap the fruits of his sinful act without any delay.” Indra, then, went back soon to his own abode; on the other hand, the high-souled Muni, though killed, looked as it were, living by the lustre of his own body. Indra, then, seeing him lying like a living man thought that the Muni might get alive and so became very sad. While he was thus arguing in his mind, he saw before him a wood cutter named Taksa and began to speak to him for his own selfish ends thus “O Artisan! Cut all the heads of this Muni and keep my word; this highly lustrous Muni is looking as it were alive; therefore, if you sever his heads, he cannot be alive.” Taksa then cursed him and spoke thus.

12-14. “O King of the Devas! The neck of this Muni is very big and therefore cannot be severed; my axe is not at all fit for this work . Specially I cannot do such a blameable act. You have done a very heinous crime, quite against the law of the good persons; I fear sin; I will not be able to cut the heads of a dead man. This Muni is lying dead; what use is there in severing his head again? O Pākas'āsana! The killer of the demon Pāka! Why do you fear in this?”

15. Indra said:-- “O Artisan! This Muni is my dire enemy. Life seems to be still lingering in his body; his body is still lustrous, I fear if the Muni be alive again!”

16. Taksa told:-- “Do you not feel shame in doing this heinous crime, when you know everything? Do you not fear God for the crime of killing a Brāhmin?”

17. Indra said:-- I will make Prāyas'chitta (penance) afterwards for the washing away of my sins; but my duty at present is to kill my enemy.

O Fortunate One! The wise men, clever in polity, say that enemies must be killed by any excuse whatsoever.

18. Taksā then replied:-- “O Maghavan! You are doing this sinful deed out of your avarice; but, O Lord! I have no cause whatsoever; how then without any cause, can I engage myself in such a vicious act?”

19-20. Indra said:-- “O Taksan! I will allot a share to you wherever there will be a sacrifice. The human beings will invariably offer to you the head of the animal killed at any sacrifice. Now cut his head according to this rule.”

21-42. Vyāsa said:-- O King! That Taksā became very glad when he heard thus from Indra and struck off the heads of the Muni with his very strong axe. O powerful King! When the three heads, thus severed, fell to the ground, thousands and thousands of birds came out of those heads in quick succession. The three groups of birds Kalavinkas, Tittiris and Kapinjalas came out very rapidly from the three heads in due succession. The Kapinjala birds came out of that mouth that used to chant the Vedas and used to drink Soma; the Tittiri birds came out of that mouth that used to see all the quarters as if it drank them; and the Kalavinka birds came out of that face that used to drink wine. Indra became very glad to see the birds thus coming out of his mouths and went back at once to his Heavens. O King! No sooner Indra went back, than Taksā came back to his own house and felt himself very pleased to receive his share of sacrificial things. On returning to his home, Indra thought that he had done his duty in slaying his powerful enemy. It did not pass in his mind that he had committed the Brahmahattyā sin (i. e., that he had killed a Brāhmin). When Vis'vakarmā heard that his virtuous son had been killed, he became very angry (in his mind) and said that as Indra had killed his qualified son engaged in asceticism without any offence, he would create another son to kill Indra. Let the Devas see his strength and power of Tapasyā and let Indra, too, reap the far-reaching effects of his own Karma. Thus saying, Vis'vakarmā distressed with anger, offered oblations in the sacrificial Fire, reciting Mantram from the Atharvan Vedas, with the object of producing a son. When Homa was performed for eight nights consecutively, a man quickly came out of that burning fire, as if he was the Incarnate of Fire itself. Seeing the lustrous son before him, come out of the fire and endowed with power and energy, Vis'vakarmā said “O Indra's enemy! Grow by my power of asceticism.” When Vis'vakarmā spoke these words, burning with anger, that brilliant fiery son began to grow, towering high above the Heavens. Within a moment that man looked a second God of Death and appeared like a mountain and shone like the God Himself. Then he spoke to his own father Vis'vakarmā, who was very distressed “O Father! Put my name. Pray, what use can I be to you? Why do you look so aggrieved and anxious; please explain to me all the causes. I make a firm vow today that will remove the cause of your sorrow. Father ! Of what avail is that to his father when he is not able to remove his sorrows!” O Father! Shall I drink the ocean or crumble the mountains to dust or shall I obstruct the passage of the rising Sun or shall I kill Indra, Yama, or the other host of Devas or shall I root out the earth and throw it with all beings into the ocean?”

43-53. O King! Hearing thus the sweet words of his son, Vis'vakarmā gladly told his mountain-like son “O my Son! You are capable to save me from troubles (Vrijina) hence you are named Vritra. O highly Fortunate One! Your brother, named Tris'irā, was a great ascetic; his three faces were all very strong. He was thoroughly conversant with the Vedas and the Vedangās and well versed in all the other knowledges. He remained always engaged in practising asceticism, surprising to the three worlds. Indra killed my qualified son with his thunderbolt; that wicked soul severed the three heads without any offence. Therefore, O Best of beings! Kill that vicious, shameless, deceitful, wicked Indra guilty of the sin of Brahmahattyā.” O King! Thus saying, Vis'vakarmā very much confounded with the breavement of his son, created various divine weapons. He prepared weapons specially suited to kill Indra, the best axes, tridents, clubs, S'aktis, Tomaras and bows made of horns and arrows, Parighas, Pattis'as, divine discus like the Sudars'an Chakra, divine inexhaustible arrow cases with arrows, nice Kavacha, very substantial air-like swift-going chariot looking like a cloud and capable to carry great loads; all these he created and gave over to his son. O King! Vis'vakarmā, the best of architects, excited by anger, made ready all the equipments necessary for war and gave them to his son Vritrāsura and sent him to kill Indra.

Here ends the Second Chapter of the Sixth Book on the birth of Vritrāsura in the Mahā Purānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter III
On the Deva defeat and on Vritra’s tapasyā

1-3. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Having the Svastyayana ceremony (a performance of rite to secure welfare or avert calamity) performed by the Brāhmanas versed in the Vedas, the powerful Vritra mounted on his chariot and started to kill Indra, the King of the Gods. The Dānavas that were previously defeated by the Devas now knowing Vritrāsura to be powerful, came up to him to serve his cause. The messengers of Indra, when they saw him ready for battle, hurriedly came to Indra and informed him all about his doings and other matters connected with it.

4-7. The messengers said:-- O Lord! Vis'vakarmā, having been very much grieved his son being slain, got very angry and by Abhichāra process (an incantation with a design to injure or magic spells or charms used for a malevolent purpose) has created a son in order to kill you. That indomitable Vritrāsura is now your powerful enemy; mounting on his chariot he is coming here to fight with you, surrounded by other Asuras. O highly Fortunate One! This enemy of yours is as high as the mountain Meru; he is now coming hurriedly to you, making a terrible noise; guard yourself carefully. O King! While Indra was hearing the messengers, the Devas came there panic-stricken and terrified and said:--

8-16. The Ganas said:-- O Lord of the Suras! Ominous signs are being seen in the houses of the Gods; the birds are making sounds, very inauspicious and foreboding a great calamity. Crows, vultures, herons, falcons, and other ugly inauspicious birds are crying and making hoarse sounds on the tops of houses. Other birds are making incessantly harsh sounds like chichi koochy. The carriers of the several Devas are weeping and shedding tears always. O highly Fortunate One! On the tops of houses are heard very loud and very dreadful sounds of the crying Rāksasīs at dead of night. O Giver of honour! The flags on the chariots are falling to the ground without any trace of wind. Thus ominous signs are being visible on earth and in the air. O King of the Devas! The ugly faced women, wearing black clothes, are roaming from house to house and always repeating “Leave the house, and go away at once.” The Deva women while sleeping in their own temples are seeing in their dreams that terrible Rāksasīs, coming to them are cutting away their hairs on their heads and are frightening them. O Indra of the Devas! The inauspicious signs like these and earthquakes and the falling of the meteors are taking place. The jackals come in the courtyard of houses at night and yell horrible heartrending sounds. Lizards are moving always in the rooms and the several limbs of our bodies are shaking and thus making very inauspicious signs.

17. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing their words, Indra became very anxious and called Brihaspati, the Deva Guru, and asked him:--

18-20. Indra spoke:-- O Brāhmana! Very inauspicious signs are being visible; dreadful winds are blowing and stars are falling from the skies what are all these? O Intelligent One! You are very wise and versed in the S'astras and the Guru of the Devas; you are omniscient and know very well how to remedy the evils. Therefore perform the rites by which enemies can be killed; do such as our miseries be all averted.

21-31. Brihaspati said:-- “O Thousand-eyed! What shall I do? You have committed shortly a heinous crime; you killed that innocent Muni and so you have earned a very bad Karmic effect. Very violent sins and good deeds produce their effects very quickly. It is, therefore, highly incumbent on those that desire for their own welfare, to take up any work with great discretion. It is never advisible to do any action that leads to the tormenting of others. Never do they find happiness who give pains to others. O Indra! You have committed Brahmahattyā under the influence of greed and delusion; now suddenly has appeared the fruit of that act. O King of the Suras! This Vritra Asura is born invulnerable to all the Devas. That powerful indomitable Asura chief is now coming, mounted on a chariot, to kill you, surrounded by the other Dānavas and taking with him the Vis'vakarmā-made divine arms and weapons equal to thunderbolt. He is coming like a second Kāla, as it were, to destroy the whole Universe. There is none in this Triloka, capable kill him; and his death will not also take place. While Brihaspati was thus speaking, a great tumultuous uproar rose at once. The Gandharbas, Kinnaras, Yaksas, Munis and other Immortals began to fly away from their quarters. Indra seeing the Devas flying away became very anxious and gave orders at once that all subservient to him must be ready at once for battle; they must go and call the Vasus, the Rudras, the twin As'vins, the Ādityas, Pûsā, Bhaga, Vāyu, Kuvera, Varuna, Yama and the other Devas to come there at once. The enemy is well nigh; so let all the Devas come on their Vimānas quickly there.”

32-44. Thus ordering, Indra mounted on the Airāvata elephant and taking the Sura Guru in front started from his own temple. The other Devas mounted on their respective carriers and, firmly resolved to fight, started with all their arms and weapons. On the other hand, Vritrāsura surrounded by the Demons, came up to the beautiful mountain, adorned with trees, on the north side of the Mānasarovara Lake. Indra, too, came there with Brihaspati in front and attended by all the other Devas to that mountain, north of the Mānasa Lake and began to fight. A dreadful fight, then, ensued between Vritra and Indra with clubs, swords, Parighas, Pās'as, arrows, S'aktis, Parsus and other weapons. The terrible fight lasted for full one hundred human years, terrifying to the self-controlled Risis and all the human beings. Varuna first turned his back; then Vāyu, then Yama, the Sun and Moon and then Indra fled from the battle-field. Seeing Indra and the other Devas flying away, Vritrāsura came to the hermitage and there bowed down to his father who looked very glad; and he said:-- O Father! I have carried out your orders; Indra and all the other Devas are defeated in the battle; as elephants and deer fly away seeing a lion, so the Devas all fled away to their respective abodes. I have taken the Airāvata, the best of elephants, away from Indra who fled away on foot. O Bhagavan! I have brought the elephant here. Kindly accept it. O Father! It is not advisable to kill a man who is terrified, therefore I did not kill them. Now kindly order anything else that I may fulfil your desires. All the Devas fled away from the battle-field, very much tired and terrified; and what more to say than this that Indra, too, fled, leaving his elephant on the field.

45-54. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Vis'vakarmā became very glad to hear his son's words and said:-- “Today I can rightly say that I have got my son and that my life is successful. O son! To-day you have sanctified me; my cares and worries are abated; my mind is also calm to see your wonderful prowess. O Child! Now hear attentively what I say. O highly intelligent One! Now carefully sit in your steady posture (Sthirāsan) and practise Tapasyā. Never trust anybody; Indra is now your enemy, ever ready to find your faults, and clever in sowing dissensions between you and your well-wishers. O Son! Tapasyā is not an ordinary thing; Laksmī (prosperity) is obtained thereby; excellent kingdoms, increase of vigour, and victories in battles are obtained. Therefore worship Hiranyagarbha and get excellent boons from him; then kill this vicious Indra, guilty of the sin Brahmahattyā. Worship the auspicious Creator calmly and carefully. The four-faced Brahmā then will be pleased and grant you your desired boon. First please the Creator of indomitable prowess, from Whose womb has sprung all this Universe, and get, then, immortality from Him. Then kill that guilty Indra, my enemy. O Son! My feeling of enmity due to the killing of my son reigns always in my mind; I cannot go to sleep peacefully nor do I get peace in any way. The vicious Indra killed my son; O Vritra! What more shall I say to you; I am merged in the ocean of sorrows; save me.”

55-60. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Thus hearing his father's words, Vritrāsura became inflamed with anger and, getting his permission, set out gladly to practise Tapasyā. He then went to the Gandhamādan mountain and performed his bath in the holy and auspicious river Mandā Kinī, and, preparing a Sthirāsan, took his seat in the Kus'ā grass, to practise the tapasyā. He left off gradually taking his food, then subsisted on water only and remained engaged in Yoga; and, seated in Sthirāsan meditated incessantly on Prajāpati, the Creator of this Universe. Indra, on the other hand, knowing Vritrāsura engaged in tapasyā became very anxious and sent to him Gandharvas, Yaksas, Pannagas, Kinnaras, Vidyādharas, Apsarās and other Deva messengers, all of unbounded vigour to create obstacles in his austerities. These Gandharvas and other Deva Yonies, expert in exercising magical spells, tried many ways and means and various gestures and postures to create disturbances in his penance; but that great ascetic Vritra, the son of Vis'vakarmā did not swerve a bit from his meditative state.

Here ends the Third Chapter of the Sixth Book on the defeat of the Deva army and on Vritra's tapasyā in the Mahāpurānam S'rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter IV
On the defeat of the Devas by Vritra

1-17. Vyāsa said:--- O King! The Suras that wanted to create hindrance in Vritra's tapasyā, seeing him firmly resolved, became disappointed in the fulfilment of their objects and returned to their own abodes. Thus full one hundred years passed away. The four-faced Brahmā, the Grandsire of the Lokas, came there mounted on his carrier the Swan, and said:-- “O Vritra! Be happy; now quit your meditation and ask boon; I will grant you the boon that you choose. O Child! Your body has become very lean and thin through your penance. I am now very pleased to see your this very hard tapasyā. Welfare be to you. Now ask the boon that you desire.” Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing thus the clearly distinct nectar-like sweet words of the Creator Brahmā, Vritra shed tears of joy and suddenly stood up. And going to him, bowed down gladly before His feet, and, with folded hands, spoke to Him, Who is desirous to grant him boons, in a tremulous voice. O Lord! Today I have been fortunate to see Thee who art generally seen with great difficulty; and I have acquired thus the posts of all the Devas; O Lotus-seated One! I have got an insatiable desire burning within me. Thou art omniscient, Thou knowest everything; still I am speaking out my mind. O Lord! Grant that my death does not occur with iron, wood, dry or wet substances or with bamboos or any other weapons and let my strength and valour be increased very much in the battle; for, then, I will be unconquerable by all the Devas with all their armies. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Thus prayed for, Brahmā said to him smiling:-- “O Child! get up; I grant that your desired boon will always be fulfilled; now go to your own place. Your death won't occur with dry or wet substances or with stones or wood. I say this truly unto you.” Thus granting the boon, Brahmā went to His Brahmāloka. Vritra, too, became very glad on receiving his desired object, and returned to his own abode. The highly intelligent Vritra informed the father about the boon granted to him; Vis'vakarmā became very glad to hear it. O highly fortunate One! Let all bliss and good fortune come unto you; kill Indra, my greatest enemy. Go and kill the murderer of my son Tris'irā, the vicious Indra and return to me. Be victorious in the battle and become the Lord of all the Devas and remove my mental agony due to the killing of my son. A son becomes then really a son when he obeys the commands of his father and when he feeds plentifully good many people on the Srāddha day (after his father's death) and when he offers Pinda at Gayā. Therefore, O Son! Keep my words and try to remove my sorrows. Know this as certain that Tris'irā never vanishes from my mind. Tris'irā was very truthful, amiable and good-natured; he was an ascetic and foremost amongst the Vedic scholars. The wicked Indra killed my dear son without any offence.

18-33. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing the father's words, that extremely indomitable Vritrāsura mounted on his chariot and quickly got out of his father's house. The proud Asura, then, marched to the battle, accompanied with his vast army, to the sounding of the conch-shells and war drums. Vritra, versed in politics and morals, exhorted his soldiers before marching and said:-- “To-day we will kill Indra and possess the kingdom of the Immortals, freed of all enemies.” O King! Thus, accompanied by his soldiers, and raising a tremendous war-cry terrifying to the Devas, the Asura set out for battle. O Bhārata! The King of the Devas, knowing that the Asura is quite at hand, became overwhelmed with terror and ordered at once the soldiers to be ready for the battle and called quickly all the Lokapālas and sent them all for the battle. The highly lustrous Indra, the tormentor of the foes, arrayed his troops in order according to Gridhra Vyûha (the method in which the vultures arrange themselves while flying) and stayed there. On the other hand Vritra, the slayer of enemies, dashed unto that place with all swiftness. A dreadful fight then ensued between the Devas and Dānavas; the two parties, desirous to get victory over the other, fought awfully hard. When the blaze of the battle fire shone to a very high pitch, the Devas dropped with sorrow while the Asuras became excited with joy. The Devas and Dānavas struck each other with Tomaras, Bhindipālas, axes, Paras'us, Pattis'as, and various other weapons. When the dreadful battle rose to a high pitch causing horripilation, Vritra became very angry and suddenly caught hold of Indra and denuding him of all clothes and armours swallowed him; he, then, remembering his former enmity, became very glad and stayed there. When Indra was thus devoured by Vritra, the Devas were overwhelmed with terror and cried out frequently, with great distress:-- “O Indra! O Indra!” All the Devas became very dejected and grieved in their hearts to see Indra denuded of his armour and clothes in the belly of Vritra and bowed down to Brihaspati and said:-- “O Indra of the Brāhmans! You are our best Guru what are we to do now? Though the gods tried their best to save Indra still Vritra has devoured him. We are all powerless, what can we do without Indra? O Lord! Perform quickly magic spells (Abhichāra process) which will lead to our Indra's liberation.”

34. Brihaspati said:-- “O Suras! The king of the gods is swallowed by Vritra, he has been quite disabled; but Indra is living in his bowels; attempt therefore must be made that he comes out while living.”

35-54. Vyāsa said:-- O King! The Devas became very anxious to see Indra in that plight and took all the ways and means carefully how he might be freed. Then they created a state tending to cause yawning, very powerful and irresistible and calculated to destroy one's enemy. Vritrāsura then yawned and his mouth got widely opened and extended. In the meanwhile Indra, the destroyer of one's enemies' strength, contracted all his limbs and came out of the expanded mouth of the Asura and fell down. Since that time, this state of yawning has become prevalent amongst the beings. The Devas were all glad to see Indra thus come out. When Indra thus got out, he fought again with Vritra for 10,000 years (Ajuta years). The fight was very dreadful, causing horripilation. On one side all the Devas joined in the battle; on the other side, the pre-eminently powerful Vritra, the son of Vis'vakarmā fought. When Vritrāsura got more and more energy in the battle, Indra became gradually dwindled and was at last defeated. Indra became very much grieved when he found himself defeated; the Devas also were very dejected to see this. Indra and the other Devas quitted the battle-field and fled away. Vritrāsura too, quickly arrived and occupied the Heavens. Vritra began to enjoy by force the Heavenly gardens and took the Airāvata elephant. O King! The Asura, the son of Tvastā, took away all Vimānas (the self-moving chariots of gods), Uchchais'rava, the best of horses, the heavenly cow, the giver of desires, the Pārijāta tree, the Apsarās, and all other jewels of the Heavens. The Devas, on the other hand, deprived of their shares in sacrifices and driven away from their Heavens, suffered very much. Vritrāsura became puffed up with vanity, when he got possession of the Heavens. Vis'vakarmā, too, became very happy at that time and began to enjoy pleasures along with his son. O Bharata! The Devas, then, united with the Munis and they began to consult about their own welfare. When the Devas took Indra with them and went to Mahā Deva in the Mount Kailās'a and bowed down to His feet very humbly and, with folded hands, spoke thus:-- O Deva of the Devas! O Mahā Deva! Thou art the Mahes'vara and the unbounded Ocean of Mercy! We are defeated by Vritrāsura and we are very much terrified. Save us, O S'ambhu! Thou dost good to all the beings; dost thou tell us, therefore, truly what are we to do now, when that powerful Dānava has dispossessed us of our Heavens. O Mahes'a! Now dislodged, where are we to go? We are not finding any remedy by which our miseries can be destroyed. O Bhûta Bhāvana! We are very much pained; help us; O merciful One! That Vritrāsura has become intoxicated with vanity due to his being granted the boon. Therefore destroy him.

55-57. S'ankara said:-- “O Devas! We will keep Brahmā in the front and let all of us go to the residence of Hari and there consult with Him how to destroy this unruly Vritra. The Janārdana Vāsudeva is fully capable to do all actions. He is powerful, knower of pretexts, highly intelligent, ocean of mercy, and fit to be asked by all for protection. Without Him, the Deva of the Devas, no success is possible in any action. Therefore all of us ought to go there for the success in our undertaking.”

58-62. Vyasa said:-- O King! Thus settling their plan of action, Indra and other Devas took S'ankara and Brahmā with them and went to the abode of Hari, who protects all and is gracious to His devotees. They, then, began to chant Purusasûkta hymns to Him and thus they praised the God Hari, the Guru of this Universe. The Janārdan Hari, the Lord of Kamalā, then, appeared before them and, after showing his respect, addressed them thus:-- O Lord of the several Lokas! What have brought you all together with Brahmā and S'ankara hither? O best of Suras! Please tell me the reason of your coming here. Vyasa said:-- O King! Thus hearing Hari's words, the Devas could not reply anything; rather almost all of them remained with an anxious look with their hands folded, overwhelmed with cares.

Here ends the Fourth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the defeat of the Devas by Vritra in the Mahā Purānam S'rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter V
On praising the Devī

1-5. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Nārāyana, the Lord of Laksmī, and Knower of the essences of all subjects, seeing the Devas extremely attached to him and anxious, spoke to them thus:-- O Suras! Why have you kept silent? Tell me why you have all come, let it be good or bad, tell me; I will try to remove your miseries. The Devas said:-- O Lord! Is there anything unknown to you in this Triloki; You know everything; why then art Thou asking us again and again? In ancient times You in your Dwarf incarnation overspread the three worlds by Your three feet and thus bound the King Vali in his own premises and gave over the sovereignty over the Devas to Indra. O All Pervading One! It is You who deluded the Daityas and procured nectar for the Devas, and it is You who sent them to the house of Death. Therefore, O Lord! You are the one and only one that is capable in warding off all the evils that befall on the Devas.

6-31. Thus hearing the Devas' words, Visnu said:-- “O Suras! You need not fear; I know one remedy, approved by all, by which that Daitya might be killed so that you would be happy. I am now giving out to you. Your welfare, your benefit must be looked at by me whether by the exercise of my intelligence or by using my prowess, by wealth pretext or by any other means whatsoever. Four means, viz., conciliation, gifts, sowing discord, or punishment are mentioned by the wise statesmen to be applied to friends and specially to the enemies. Brahmā was worshipped by Vritra with severe austerities and He granted boons and it is due to the influence of that favour that this Asura has become indomitable. The more so that Vis'vakarmā created him from the sacrificial fire; it is through all these causes that the Demon Vritrāsura, conqueror of the enemies' stronghold, has grown up so very powerful that he can hardly be conquered by any being. O Suras! First peace must be negotiated with him; then deceive him, otherwise the enemy will be very difficult to conquer. First entice him and bring him under control; then kill him. Now take the Risis and Gandharbas with you and go where the powerful enemy Vritrāsura is residing and make a treaty with him; thus he will be conquered. Swear on oath and accede to the terms he proposes and thus create faith in him; then cultivate friendship with him; lastly, when time will come, kill that powerful enemy. O Suras! I will also enter, unseen by anybody, into the excellent weapon of Indra, his thunderbolt and will help him in due time. Wait till the period of his longevity expires; otherwise his death will never take place. Now go to that Asura, with Gandharbas and Risis and cunningly cultivate friendship between him and Indra, by conciliatory words; when he begins thus to put his confidence, then deceive him. I will enter hiddenly into the strong well covered thunderbolt. When Indra will come to know that the Demon has put complete faith in him, he will hurl his thunderbolt against him and thus the enemy will be killed and not otherwise. O Lord of the Devas! Do not consider for the present the act of treachery that you will commit: take my help and kill that wicked Demon with thunderbolt. To practise hypocrisy with an hypocrite is not considered a sin; specially no powerful enemy can be killed only by the well known rules applicable to warriors, without any deceit. I also deceived, before, Vali, with my dwarf body and again I deceived all the Demons by showing myself as a beautiful woman; therefore to practise deceit with a strong deceitful enemy is never considered a sin. Know this. O Devas! Now you all conjointly worship the Devī Bhagavatī with Mantras and prayers and take Her shelter; the Yoga Māyā, then, will help you. We, too, worship that Devī, the Highest Prakriti, the Incarnate of pure Sattva Guna, Who grants success, bestows us all our desires, Who is Herself the object of desires, and Who is never realised by any except by those Yogis, self-controlled pure men. Indra, too, will certainly be able to kill his enemy in battle if he worships Her; for the Mahā Māyā, the Creatrix of Delusion, will, when worshipped, delude that Demon. Thus deluded by Her Māyā, Vritrāsura will easily be killed by him; there is no doubt in this, what more do you want than this that everything will be successfully accomplished when the Devī Ambikā is propitiated and gets well pleased. She regulates the hearts of all and is the Cause of all causes. Without Her worship no one's desires can be expected to be accomplished. Therefore, O Best of Suras! Worship the Universal Mother, the Prakriti Devī with greatest devotion and with greatest purity for the destruction of your enemy. See! In days of yore, I fought for five thousand years, dreadfully with the two Demons Madhu and Kaitabha and then killed them. I worshipped, then, the Mahā Māyā, the Highest Prakriti; She was thus pleased and deluded the two Asuras; thus the two powerful Asuras puffed up with vanity were deluded and thus I could kill those terrible Daityas under a pretext. Therefore, O Suras! You, too, worship that Highest Prakriti with the greatest devotion; She will then surely fulfill your desires.

32-49. O King! When the intelligent Visnu enlightened thus the Devas, they went to the top of the Mount Sumeru, adorned with the Mandāra trees, and, remaining at a secluded place, recited slowly Her Mantrams and thus engaged in asceticism and meditation, began to chant hymns and praise that Universal Mother, the Holder of the world, the Remover of all world ailings, and the Creatrix, Preservatrix and Destructrix of the world and the Bestower of all desires to Her devotees. The Devas said:-- “O Devī! Be graciously pleased unto us! O Thou, the Destructrix of the afflictions of the distressed! We have taken refuge unto Thy lotus-feet. We have been defeated by Vritrāsura in the battle, we are very much oppressed and afflicted. O Thou, the Highest Reality! O Thou, the Mother of the whole Universe! Protect us as a Mother protects her child; we are fallen into this difficulty arising from our enemies. O Mother! Nothing is hidden from Thy knowledge in the three worlds. Why art Thou taking no notice of us, that are being tormented by the Asuras! O Mother! Thou createst, preservest, and destroyest the three worlds; Brahmā, Visnu and Mahes’a are created by Thy mere will and are doing all Thy works. Mother! They are not independent; by the contraction of Thy eye-brows, they are directed and enjoy all the pleasures. The Mother protects her sons afflicted with various difficulties and dangers, even when they are found guilty of various offences. It is Thou that hast made this rule; then why, O Merciful! Art Thou not protecting us who are quite innocent and whom Thou dost know as having taken refuge unto Thy lotus-feet. O Devī! If Thou thinkest that we forget Thee, being too much attracted by the enjoyments that Thou hast been pleased to confer unto us and therefore we are proper not to be looked upon with Thy merciful eyes, we would say that this is quite true; but, O Mother ! Nowhere is seen a feeling of a Mother to Her child; we are no doubt, objects of Thy mercy and favour always. Besides there is no fault of us in this matter, O Mother! that we do not worship Thee and become immersed in sensual enjoyments; for Thy creation, the Moha (delusion) is very powerful and deludes us. O Mother! Thou art naturally Merciful! Knowing these, why art Thou not showing mercy unto us. O Devī! Thou hadst killed before in battle, for our sake, the powerful Daitya Chief Mahis'āsura, very terrible to all the beings. Then why art not Thou, O Mother ! killing this dreadful Vritrāsura? O Mother! Thou hadst killed the two brother Daityas, S'umbha and Nis'umbha, extraordinarily powerful, and the other Daityas that followed them; O Thou, the embodiment of mercy! Similarly destroy now this deceitful strong Vritrāsura. O Mother! Delude this proud Asura so that he could not manifest, in the least, his power. We are very much troubled by the Asuras and overwhelmed with terror from them; Thou savest us; for there is no other in the three worlds that can by his own force remove the sorrows and sufferings of the Devas. O Mother! Though Thou hast shown favour towards Vritra, now dost kill him soon, whose nature is cruel and tormenting to others. O Bhavānī! Better dost Thou save him from sin by Thy holy arrows. Otherwise that vicious Asura will surely enter into the hideous Hell. It is for his welfare that Thou oughtest to kill him. Those that had been before enemies of the Gods, Thou didst purify them by weapons in the battle-field and hadst sent them to the Nandana Garden in the Heavens. O Thou, the Mercy personified! Was it not that Thou didst not save them from hell? Then why art not Thou killing this Vritrāsura! We know this for certain that the Asura is Thy enemy, not Thy servant; for that mischievous soul is giving us trouble. O Mother! How can he be Thy servant and devotee who torments the Devas that are always engaged in worshipping Thy lotus feet. O Mother! How can we perform Thy worship? The flowers and other articles used in worship all are created by Thee; especially we and the Mantras, in fact, everything is the manifestation of Thy power. Therefore, O Bhavānī! We worship Thee by laying ourselves prostrate on Thy feet. Be'st Thou pleased. Those men are blessed that worship with devotion Thy lotus feet for crossing this ocean of world. O Devī! Those Yogins that want final liberation and forsake therefore all attachments, vikāras and delusions, even they attain success then only when they meditate Thy lotus feet. Those that are great Sacrificers and know best the essence of the Vedas, even they when they offer oblations to the sacrifice, utter “Svāhā” that is cheering to the Devas and “Svadhā” very consoling to the Pitris; thus they always think of Thee (for Svāhā and Svadhā are Thy names only). O Mother! Thou art the retentive power and memory. Thou art the beauty, Thou art the peace, Thou art the Buddhi (intellect) well known to clarify men's minds; and Thou art the prosperity and wealth of all these three worlds. O Devī! Those that worship Thee, Thou givest them, out of mercy, those wealth in some way or other.

50-57. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Thus worshipped by the Devas, the Devī Bhagavatī appeared before them in a very beautiful form, thin, adorned with all ornaments. Her two hands holding a noose, and goad, and the other two hands making signs to discard all fear and ready to grant boons; Her loins very beautiful, girdled with a gold band with small bells pending and making sweet tinkling sounds; Her feet with anklets (ornaments) making sweet sonorous sounds with tiny tinkling bells. Her voice was exceedingly sweet and lovely, Her forehead was adorned with the crescent of the Moon and on Her head was glittering a diadem of jewels, Her lotus-face adorned with sweet soft smiles and with Her three beauteous lotus-eyes looking like Indībaras. Her body was of a red colour like the Pārijāta flowers and Her limbs were marked with red sandal-paste. She was dressed in a red attire. The Devī looked well pleased, like an ocean of infinite mercy, wearing complete dress suited to happy interviews, the Creatrix of all this Cosmos, the Highest, the Knower of all, the Directrix of all, and the Great Upholder of all. She looked like an embodiment of the Truth of all Vedāntas and the Incarnate of ever Existence, Intelligence, Bliss, the Mahā Devī Bhagavatī Bhuvanes'varī. The Devas all bowed down before Her standing in front of them. The Mother then spoke:-- “What business have you got here? Speak to Me.”

58-59. The Devas said:-- “O Bhagavatī! Vritrāsura is tormenting much the Devas; Bewitch him. O Devī! Do such as he can trust the Devas; and impart then strength on our weapons such as he can be killed.” Vyāsa said:-- “O King! That will be done.” Saying thus, the Devī departed then and there. The Devas became very glad and returned respectively to their abodes.

Here ends the Fifth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the praising of the Devī by the Devas in S'rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter VI
On the slaying of Vritrāsura

1-3. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Thus getting the boons from the Devī, the Devas and the Risis blazing with their asceticism, all united and consulted with each other; then they went to the excellent Ās'rama of Vritra. There they saw Vritra in a sitting posture and with his own Tejas (fiery spirit in him) as if ready to burn the three worlds and to devour all the Devas. The Risis, then, spoke to Vritra the sweet words full of sentiments for the serving of the Devas' ends, according to the principle of conciliation.

4-23. “O highly fortunate Vritra! Terrific to all the Lokas! Yo have now established your dominion in all the places over this whole Universe; but your enmity with Indra is the only cause to interrupt you in your happiness; there is no doubt in this. This enmity has increased much the anxiety of you both and therefore has grown very painful. Neither you nor Indra can go to sleep peacefully, there is always that fear hanging on you both, on account of that enmity. And, see! A long long while has passed away since the last battle was fought between you two; yet all the Devas, Asuras, men and other subjects, are feeling a sense of oppression and pain. In this world happiness is the only thing to be sought for and pain is to be avoided; this is the eternal state of things. Never does that man who practises enmity with another, get happiness; this has been ascertained by the wise. It is only those brave warriors, that found taste in warfare, that approve of battles; but the wise that are expert in amorous enjoyments do not like battle as destroying the sensual enjoyments; they do not like fighting with flowers even; what to say with sharpened arrows! In a battle, the victory is doubtful but the shooting of arrows is certain, This world is dependent on Fate (Daiva, i.e., dependent on the cosmic rulers or deities or Devas of the Universe), so is victory or defeat. So knowing this, one ought never to fight. Bathing in proper time, taking food and sleeping in fixed times and having a chaste serving wife, these are the means towards happiness in this world. While in warfares, shooting terrible arrows and striking with fierce axes take place; what happiness can there possibly exist? Rather the enemy finds pleasure there. There is a saying that death in battles leads one to Heaven, but this is merely an enticing statement, inciting one to war! Really it is fruitless. Supposing that happiness comes ultimately to those who pain their bodies by being shot with arrows and who allow their carcasses being devoured by the crows and jackals, then no man, even of dull understanding, will like this, what to speak of intelligent persons! Therefore, O Vritra! Let everlasting peace and friendship be established between you and Indra; both of you in that case will derive everlasting peace and happiness. Moreover if the enmity between you terminates from this instant, then we, the ascetics and Gandharbas will, no doubt, be able to remain in our own respective Ās'rams with great comfort. O Powerful Hero! Owing to incessant wars between you and Indra, the Munis, Gandharbas, Kinnaras and beings are day and night, suffering very much. For the happiness of all peace-loving persons, we, the Munis, the residents of the forest, earnestly desire that there be formed friendship between you two. We desire that you, Indra and all the Jīvas get happiness. O Vritra! We stand as mediators in this treaty between you and Indra; we will make each party swear on oath and thus make it conducive to the happiness of both. Indra will now swear on oath before you on the terms that you will dictate and thus will make your heart cheerful. Know this verily that this earth stands on Truth, the sun rises for the sake of Truth, the winds blow all along for Truth and the boundless ocean never oversteps its limit for Truth. Therefore let your friendship, be established on Truth. Thus tied together by bonds of friendship let you two sleep, play, make sports in water and sit together happily.”

24-28. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing the Maharsi's words, the highly intelligent Vritra began to say:-- “Risis! You are possessed with knowledge and many other qualifications and you are ascetics; you are therefore to be respected by me. You are the Munis and therefore you never speak anywhere falsehood; your conduct is good and you practise rite and ceremonies; you are calm; therefore you do not know the causes of pretexts. The intelligent should never cultivate friendship with a knave, licentious person who is void of understanding, an infamous, and a shameless person, specially if he be an enemy. This vicious Indra is shameless, deceitful, licentious, and the killer of a Brāhmana; therefore no faith can ever be placed on such persons. You are saints and added with all good qualifications; therefore your minds never play in the mischievous thoughts of others; it is because your heart is calm and quiet that you cannot understand the minds of the deceitful and treacherous; therefore you ought never to stand as mediators between any two persons.”

29-32. The Munis said:-- “O King! All the creatures certainly enjoy the fruits of their Karmas, whether good or bad; how then, can persons, of perverted intellect, obtain peace when they do mischief to others. The treacherous persons certainly go to hell and suffer miseries always. The slayers of Brāhmanas and the drunkards may get liberation; but never the faithless and those who go against their friends get off free; these will have to suffer undoubtedly in the hells. Therefore, O Knower of all things! Give out clearly what is going on exactly in your mind and the exact terms that you want; and the treaty will be made between you and Indra exactly according to those terms.”

33-34. Vritra said:-- “O highly fortunate Munis! I can enter into a treaty of peace with Indra only on the condition that Indra with all the other Devas will not kill me in day or in night with any dry or liquid substance or with wood, stone, or thunderbolt and on no other terms.”

35-68. Vyāsa said:-- O King! The Risis then gladly accepted his word and brought Indra there and recited to him the terms of the treaty of peace. Indra, then, swore, an oath, before the Munis with Fire as the Witness that he would comply with the terms of the treaty, and was thus freed from his heavy thoughts and felt that he had been rid of a fever. Vritra, then, relied on lndra's words; became his friend, and began live, play and enjoy with him. They felt pleasure by their union and began to roam sometimes in the Nandana Garden, sometimes in the Gandha Mādana, sometimes on the shores of oceans, Vritra was very much delighted when they were thus united in friendship; but Indra watched him to find his faults; thus sometime passed. A few years passed away after the treaty had been concluded. And the straight-forward Vritra began to place very much confidence on Indra; but Indra meditated on the means how to kill him. One day Visvakarmā, knowing that his son Vritrāsura placed implicit confidence on Indra, called his son and said:-- “O my son Vritra! Hear my good words. See, it is never advisable to trust anybody with whom there has arisen once the enmity. Indra is your greatest enemy; he always intends evil to you; therefore do not trust him any more. Indra is never to be trusted, who is always covetous, inimical, rejoicing at others sufferings, licentious and addicted to others' wives; vicious, deceitful, finding faults with others, always jealous, a juggler, and puffed up with vanity. O Child!  What more shall I say than this fact that that villain, without fearing sin, easily entered into the womb of his mother and cut the crying child in the womb into seven pieces and then each seventh part again into seven parts, thus altogether into forty-nine parts. Therefore O my son! He is never to be trusted on any account. He who is always addicted to vicious deeds never feels shame in perpetrating again another crime.” Vyāsa said:-- O King! Vritra's death time drew nigh; hence he could not take his father's words as auspicious, though he was warned by his father in words full of meaning. One day, in the evening time, at a very inauspicious dreadful moment, Indra saw Vritra on the shore of an ocean and began to think of the boon granted by Brahmā to the Asura thus:-- “Now this is the terrible evening time; this cannot be called day nor can it be called night, and this demon is also here alone in this solitary place; it is advisable therefore to effect his death by force, there is no doubt in this.” Thus arguing in his mind, Indra remembered the Undecaying Soul Hari. Bhagavān, the Best of Purusas came there, unseen by anybody, and entered into the thunderbolt; Indra quickly collected himself to kill Vritrāsura; but he thought how he could slay this Demon, unconquerable in the battle; and if he did not slay his enemy then by deceit, then his enemy would continue to live, and it would be impossible for him to get his own welfare. While he was thus thinking, he saw the foam of the waters of the ocean as big as a mountain; thinking that foam not to be dry nor wet and considering that foam not to be any weapon, he easily took that foam and instantly remembered with a heartful devotion the Highest Force Bhuvanes'varī. On Her remembrance, the Bhagavatī infused Her part into that foam and the thunderbolt, instilled with the force of Nārāyana, was covered, too, by that foam. Indra, then, hurled the thunderbolt covered with foam on Vritra; and the Demon, thus struck, instantly fell down like a mountain. When Vritrāsura was thus killed, Indra became very glad; the Risis began to praise him with various hymns. Indra, then, with all the other Devas worshipped the Devī, through Whose Grace the enemy had been killed and they praised Her with various hymns. The image of the Bhagavatī the Supreme S'akti was built of ruby and installed in the Nandana Garden. O King! Since then all the Devas used to worship the Devī thrice a day, morning, midday and evening and since then the S'rī Devī became the tutelary deity of the Gods. Indra worshipped then Visnu also, the Highest of the Gods. When the terrible powerful Vritrāsura was killed, the auspicious wind began to blow gently; the Devas, Gandharbas, Rākhsasas, and Kinnaras began to roam about with great joy. Vritrāsura was deluded by the Māyā of Bhagavatī, and Her force entered into the foam; hence Indra was capable to kill him suddenly and it is, for this reason, that the Devī, the Goddess of the world, is known in the three worlds as “Vritranihantrī,” the slayer of Vritra. But at the first sight Indra killed him by means of the foam; hence the people say that Vritra was killed by Indra.

Here ends the Sixth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the slaying of Vritrāsura in the Mahapurānam S'rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter VII
On Indra’s living under disguise in the Mānas Lake

1-16. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Now seeing Vritra slain, Visnu, the Deva of the Devas, went to Vaikuntha; but, with this fear reigning supreme in his mind that it was He that virtually slew him. Indra, too, then became afraid of the sin committed by him and returned to his Heavens. The Munis, too, became very anxious and thought what great sin they have committed in cheating Vritrāsura. It is the company of Indra that now made their name “Munis” as meaningless. The Munis thought thus:-- “Oh! Vritra on our words trusted Indra and we have thus turned out today traitors in company with that traitor Indra. Attachment and affection is the cause of all mischief. Fie on that attachment! It is, as it were, tied by the cord of affection that we had sworn falsely on oath and thus deceived Vritra. Those that deliberately guide others to vicious acts or those that advise or incite others to do sinful acts or those that side with the sinners certainly partake of the fruits of the sin committed. Visnu, too, committed the sin, though he had Sattva Guna preponderance, when he entered into the thunderbolt and thus helped Indra in killing Vritra. It seems that henceforth the people, when selfish, won't hesitate to commit afterwards any sinful act when they will see that Bhagavān Visnu could have done, in concert with Indra, such a vicious thing. Of the four virtues Dharma, Artha, Kāma, and Moksa, Dharma and Moksa are very rare in the three worlds. Artha (wealth) and Kāma (desires) are everywhere recommended as excellent and therefore held very dear; Dharma is now merely in name and is the cause of the vanity of the Pundits (no one now really practises Dharma with devotion). Thus arguing, the Munis became very much afflicted in their minds and went back to their own hermitages respectively, broken-hearted and absent-minded. O Bharata! Hearing of the death of his son by Indra, Vis’vakarmā wept very much and he become disgusted very much with the affairs of the world. He went to the place where lay his son Vritra and became pained very much to see him in that state; and he performed his cremation and other funeral obsequies according to the prescribed rules. He then bathed, performed his Tarpanam (peace-offering) and funeral ceremonies due to a person in the first year of his death. Then his heart became afflicted with sorrow and he cursed the vicious Indra saying that as Indra had killed his son, enticing him by falsely swearing on oath, so Indra, in his turn would suffer a heavier suffering, to be inflicted by Vidhi (the Great Creator of Universe). O King! Thus cursing Indra, Vis’vakarmā, very much afflicted due to the loss of his son, went to the top of the Mountain Meru and began to practise a hard tapasyā.

17. Janamejaya said:-- “O Grandsire! First tell me what happiness or pain did Indra derive by killing Vritra, the son of Tvastā.”

18-40. Vyāsa said:-- O fortunate One! What are you asking? and what is the nature of your doubt?  The fruit of one's Karma is certainly to be enjoyed, whether it be auspicious or inauspicious. Be he weak or strong. Be he a Deva, an Asura or a human being, everyone in fact, will have to suffer for one's Karma, good or bad, to its full extent, whether it be done a little or too much. See! It was Visnu that gave advice to Indra and entered into his thunderbolt and helped him when Indra was ready to kill Vritra; but when there had been Indra's difficult time, Visnu did not help Indra in any way. Therefore, O King! It is clear that when one's time is favourable, everybody turns out friends; but when Fate turns adverse, nobody is seen to come forward to help. When Fate is against anybody, one's father, mother, wife, or brother, servant, friend or one's own son becomes quite incapable to help anybody. The man, who does good or bad acts, suffers for his deeds. When Vritra was killed, everyone went back to their respective homes; but Indra, the Lord of S’achī, became very much deprived of his energy and brilliancy due to the sin of his killing a Brāhmin; all the Devas, then, blamed him as a Brāhmaghataka (the killer of a Brāhmin). They talked further that no other body would have been able to even indulge the idea of killing a Muni who was an intimate friend and who placed full confidence on him when Indra had sworn on oath that he would be a friend to Vritra. O King! Everywhere then there was this gossip in the assemblages of the gods, in their gardens, at the meetings of the Gandharbas that Indra had deceived Vritra who had relied on him, on the words of the Munis and then killed him by pretext, and so had done, indeed, a horrible crime. Indra had now forsaken the eternal proofs of the Vedas; and he had become a Bauddha; therefore he could have easily killed Vritra. No other body, save Visnu and Indra, could have acted contrary to their words, as clearly evidenced by the manner in which Vritra had been killed. These remarks, similar to those mentioned above, became everywhere current and Indra heard all of them, tending to his own disgrace. O King! Fie on that man's life that is blamed everywhere! Fie on that man whose fame has been marred amongst the people. Such a person becomes laughed at by his enemies, when seen by them on the way. The royal saint Indradyumna (Rājarsī) was made to get down, though sinless, from Heavens when his good deeds expired. Why, then, would not vicious persons be made to descend? The king Yayāti had to get down from Heavens for his very little fault and had to pass eighteen Yugas in the form of a crab. What more can be said than the fact that even the Bhagavān Achyut Hari had to take several incarnations in the wombs of boar, crocodile, etc., out of the curse from a Brāhmin, due to his cutting off the bead of the wife of Bhrigu. Though omnipresent, yet he had to take the appearance of a dwarf and had to beg from the King Vali's palace. What more troubles and miseries than this can be inflicted on those that had sinned viciously. O Ornament of Bharata! Rāmchandra, too, had to experience, due to the curse of Bhrigu, terrible miseries on the bereavement of Sītā Devī. Similarly Indra, too, for his sin of killing a Brāhmin, was so much terrified that he could not get his healthy condition though he remained in his own house, endowed with all sorts of prosperity and wealth. Seeing, then, Indra lustreless, knowledge-less, almost void of consciousness, and overwhelmed with fear, his wife S’achī, the daughter of Pulomā, spoke to him thus:-- “O Lord! Your dreadful enemy has been killed; why are you, then, sighing so much, being afflicted with so much terror? O Lord! You have destroyed your enemy; then why are you so much anxious? why are you then so much remorseful and drawing such deep heavy sighs like an ordinary man? I am not seeing any other powerful enemy of yours; then, why do you look so anxious and bowed down with cares, as if you look quite unconscious.”

41-44. Indra said:-- “O Devī! True that I have no other powerful enemy, yet I do not find peace nor any happiness. I fear for the sin Brāhmahattyā in my house. O Devī! This Nandana Garden, the city of Kuvera, the lord of riches, this nectar forest, the sweet music of the Gandbarbas, the beautiful dance of the Apsarās, all these now do not give the least pleasure to me. What more can I say than this that the beautiful Lady like you, most beautiful amidst the three worlds, and other beautiful ladies, the Heavenly cow, the Mandāra tree (one of the five trees of the celestial region), the Pārijāta tree (the flower tree), the Santāna tree, the Kalpa tree (yielding all desires) and the Harichandan (saffron tree) and others cannot give pleasure to me. What to do, where to go, so that I get happiness, O Beloved! This thought makes me uneasy. And so I am not able to get happiness in my own thought.”

45-60. Vyāsa said:-- Thus speaking to his most distressed wife, Indra got out of his house and went to the exceedingly beautiful lake, named Manasarovara. Indra there entered into the tubular stalk of the lotus, his body becoming very lean and thin out of the fear and sorrow. Nobody could recognise him as he was overpowered by his terrible sin. He then began to behave himself, as regards feeding and enjoying, like a snake; and he became ovewhelmed with thought, helpless, and his organs were out of order, He remained hidden in the water. When Indra, the king of the Devas, thus fled away out of the fear of his Brāhmahattyā sin, the other Devas became very anxious; everywhere various evil signs manifested themselves. The Risis, Siddhas and Gandharbas were very much panic-stricken, as various disturbances and violent symptoms covered all over the world without any king. Grains began to grow very scanty, due to want of rains; the streams were almost dry and very little water was there in the tanks. In such a state of anarchism, all the inhabitants of the celestial regions, the Devas and Risis consulted and installed the king Nahusa in the place of Indra. O King! Nahusa, though virtuous, became, under the sway of Rajoguna, influenced by lust and thus he got very much addicted to worldly enjoyments. He began to amuse himself in the Garden of Paradise, surrounded by the Apsarās or celestial nymphs. One day he heard of the excellent qualifications of S'achī Devī, the wife of Indra, and desired to acquire her. Then he spoke to the Risis:-- The Devas and you, united, have installed me in the office of Indra; but why does not the Indranī (the wife of Indra), come to me so long? If you want to do what I like, then quickly bring S'achī here before me for my gratification. I am now Indra and therefore the god of the Devas and all the worlds; therefore bring today quickly Indranī to my house. Hearing thus the words of the king Nahusa, the Devas and Devarsīs became anxious and went to S'achī, and, with their heads bowed down, spoke thus:-- “O Wife of Indra! The wicked Nahusa is now desiring you; he became angry and told as to send you to him quickly; O Devī! We have made him Indra and are therefore under him; what shall we do now under these circumstances?” S'achī, the wife of Indra, hearing their words, became absent-minded and spoke to Brihaspati, thus:-- “O Brāhmana! I now take refuge unto you.”

61-62. Brihaspati said:-- “O Devī! Do not be afraid of Nahusa; he has been deluded by Moha. O Child! I won't forsake the eternal religion and thus I won't give you over to the hands of Nahusa. No doubt that wretch suffers the severest torments in Hell to the end of Pralaya (the Great Dissolution) who quits and hands over the distressed person under one's refuge to another. O Good One! Be comfortable; I will never forsake you.”

Here ends the Seventh Chapter of the Sixth Book on Indra's living under disguise in the Mānas Lake in the Mahāpurānam S'rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter VIII
On S’achī’s praising the Devī

1-11. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing that the wife of Indra had taken refuge under Brihaspati, the King Nahusa became very angry towards Brihaspati and spoke to the Devas:-- “ O Devas! I hear that the stupid son of Angirasa has given protection to Indra and has kept her in his house; I will therefore kill him quickly.” Seeing the terrible Nahusa thus angry, the Devas and Risis consoled him and said:-- O King of kings! Do not be angry; quit this vicious motive yours. See, the Risis in all the Dharma S'āstras, have declared the holding of illicit connection with other's wives as a very heinous crime and have blamed it very much. You can consider that the daughter of Pulomā is always chaste, devoted to her husband and very good-natured. How can she, when her husband is alive, take another husband? O Lord! You are now the Lord of the three worlds and hence the Defender of Faith and Religion; and if a person like you act irreligiously, all the subjects will then go to annihilation. One who is a Lord should always observe the rules of good conduct. Besides there are many other celestial women in this Heaven as beautiful as S'achī; you can satisfy your thirst with them. Mutual love is recognised by the wise as the true originator of amorous dealings; ravishing a woman by force destroys all amorous sentiments. O King! And if the mutual love be similar and equal in all respects, then comes the true happiness; you have now got the post of Indra; therefore quit this idea of holding illicit connection with other's wives and indulge in other good thoughts. Demerits destroy prosperity and merits increase it. Therefore, O King! Leave all these bad thoughts and make your heart take a good turn and be happy.

12-15. Nahusa said:-- “O Devas! Where were you all when Indra stole away the wife of Gautama and when the Moon stole away the wife of Brihaspati? It is easy to give advice to others but to act according to that is very rare in this world. O Devas! Let the qualified Devī come to me you will derive much benefit from it and the Devī, too, will get Her highest happiness; there is no doubt in this. I tell you truly that in no other way I will be satisfied; bring Indrānī here quickly, whether by good words or by force.”

16-17. The Devas and Munis heard the words of the king Nahusa, smitten by the Cupid's arrows, got terrified and said:-- “We will bring Indrānī to you by gentle words.” Saying thus, they went to the house of Brihaspati.

18-21. Vyāsa said:-- O King! The Devas, going to the house of Brihaspati, spoke thus with folded hands:-- O Guru! We know that Indrānī has taken shelter in your house; we will have to hand her over today to the king Nahusa for we all united have made over the post of Indra to Nahusa. Let this beautiful Lady now choose and worship him. Hearing these awful words of the Devas, Brihaspati said to them:-- “O Devas! This chaste woman, devoted to her husband, has now taken my shelter; therefore I can never part with her.” The Devas said:-- “O Guru! Kindly advise then - if you do not part with S'achī Devī - how the king Nahusa be pleased; if he becomes angry, it will then be very difficult to please him.”

22-31. Brihaspati said:-- “O Devas! Let S'achī now go to Nahusa, and tempt him with enticing words and make this condition that when her husband's death will be known to her, she will then accept Nahusa as her husband. How could she accept another husband when her husband was alive. Therefore let her now go in quest of her high-souled husband. Let S'achī thus make condition with him and, thus deceiving him, let her try her best to bring back her husband. O King! Then, after coming to this conclusion, Brihaspati and other Devas went with Indrānī to the king Nahusa. Seeing them come, especially looking at Indrānī the artificial king Nahusa became very glad and said to Indrānī:-- “O Beloved! Today I am become the real Indra. O beautiful-eyed One! Worship me as your husband; see the Devas now have made me to be worshipped by all the gods.” When Nahusa spoke thus, the Devī S'achī became filled with great shame; she began to tremble and said to the king:-- “O Lord of the Devas! I desire to ask a boon from you. Better wait till I ascertain whether Indra is dead or alive, there is this doubt in my heart whether he lives or whether he is dead. O King of kings! Let me, first of all, clear my doubts. Kindly excuse me and wait till then. I tell this truly that after I ascertain the fact, I will worship you. I do not know anything whether Indra is dead or whether he has gone any where else.” When S'achī Devī spoke thus, Nahusa became very glad and saying “let it be so” dismissed her.

32-47. Thus having received permission from the King to depart, S'achī hurriedly went to the Devas and spoke to them to try their best to bring Indra back as soon as possible. O King! Hearing these sweet and holy words of Indrānī the Devas intently consulted with each other how they could get back Indra. They then went to Vaikuntha and began to praise with hymns the original Deva, the God Visnu, the Lord of the Universe, kind to those that seek His refuge. The Devas, skilled in speaking, spoke to Visnu with a very troubled heart:-- “O Lord! Indra, the Lord of the Devas, is very much troubled with his sin Brahmahattyā. Where is he staying now, invisible to all the beings? O Lord! He is now overcome with the sin Brahmahattyā by killing Vritra, the best of the Brāhmins. We ask your skilful and intelligent advice. O Lord! You are the sole refuge of him as well as of us. We are now involved in a great difficulty. Kindly show us the way how we, as well as Indra, can get out of this difficult crisis.” Hearing the pitiful words of the Devas, Visnu said:-- Let Indra perform the As'vamedha sacrifice (Horse sacrifice) for the purification of his sins. By this Yajña, that can destroy all sins, Indra will be purified and he will regain his Indraship; there is no doubt in this. The more so because the Devī, the Universal Mother, will be pleased with his Horse sacrifice and will destroy all his sins, Brahmahattyā and others. Lo! Merely remembering Her destroys heaps of sins; and, if by this Horse sacrifice, She be pleased, what wonder is there that sins of a more grave nature would be destroyed! And let Indrānī worship Bhagavatī daily; happiness will undoubtedly be gained by worshipping that most Auspicious One! By this the King Nahusa will be particularly deluded by the World Mother and will then be quickly destroyed by the sin committed by himself. And Indra, purified by As'vamedha, will soon regain his position and all his wealth. O king! Thus hearing the sweet beneficial words of Visnu of indomitable prowess, the Devas went to the spot, where resided Indra. Brihaspati and the other Devas consoled the distressed Indra and made him celebrate duly in right order, the Horse sacrifice the greatest of all sacrifices. Indra then distributed his sin Brahmahattyā amongst the trees, rivers, mountains, women, and the earth.

48-51. Thus casting aside his sin on all the above things, Indra became again free from his sin, and, getting rid of his fever and uneasiness, abided by the time and remained there invisible in the tubular stem of the lotus. Doing that wonderful act, the Devas started from there and reached their own abodes. The daughter of Pulomā, suffering from her bereavements from Indra, spoke then to Brihaspati with great sorrow:-- “O Lord! Why is my husband still invisible to me, when he has performed the As'vamedha sacrifice? Kindly show me the way how I can get a sight of him.”

52-62. Brihaspati said:-- “O Devī! Worship the most Auspicious Bhagavatī; surely She will make your husband sinless and you will see him. The Devī Ambikā, the Upholdress of the Universe, will desist the King Nahusa from doing the wrongful act and it is She that will delude him by Her Māyā and get his downfall from the Heavens. O King! When Brihaspati spoke thus, S'achī Devī got initiated by him in the Devī Mantram, capable to secure success in any undertaking. Thus getting the Mantram from her Guru, She began to worship the Devī Bhuvane'svarī duly with flowers, sacrificial victims and other necessary articles for worship. Thus Indrānī, with a view to see her husband, performed the worship of the Devī; she quitted all the articles of enjoyment and luxury and assumed the garb of an ascetic; thus some time passed away, when the Devī was pleased and appeared before her on the back of a Swan, in Her peaceful form, ready to grant boons to Indrānī. She looked, then, fiery like thousands of Moons; Her lovely beauty appeared in rays like thousands and thousands of fixed lightnings. The four Vedas personified began to praise Her in hymns from the four sides. Her two hands were adorned with a noose and a goad, and Her two other hands made signs to grant boons and to discard all fear. The Vaijayantī garland of clear crystal-like gems suspended from Her neck up to Her feet. Her face was adorned with smiles and signs as if she would grant favours. She had three eyes and was the ocean of mercy and the Mother of all the Jīvas from a worm up to Brahmā. Her two heavy breasts were filled with unbounded ocean of nectar-like juice of Peace and Mukti. She was the Goddess of innumerable worlds, the Goddess of all and the Highest, endowed with all the knowledges and the Incarnate of the Undecaying and Immoveable Brahmā. The Devī, then, began to address S'achī, the wife of Indra, in pleasant words and in voice deep like a rolling thunder.

63-69. The Devī said:-- O Darling to Indra! Better now ask your desired boon. I am much pleased with your worship. O Beautiful One! I have come here to grant you boon. To see Me is not an easy task; by the collected merits, acquired in thousands and thousands of births one is able to See Me. Hearing the words of the Devī, S'achī Devī, the wife of Indra, fell prostrate before Her feet and began to speak to the Highest Goddess, the Bhagavatī, Who seemed graciously pleased:-- “O Mother! I now desire from Thee, that I may see my husband whom I attained after great difficulty, that I be freed from the fear arising out of King Nahusa and I want that Indra be reinstated as Indra as he was before.” The Devī said:-- “O Lady of the Devas! Better go with this My messenger (Dûtī) to Mānasarovara; there is installed My fixed form, named Vis'vakāmā. You will see your Indra staying there very sorrowful and overwhelmed with terror. I will delude the King Nahusa within a very short period. O large-eyed One! Be calm and quiet; I will fulfil your desires; soon I will delude that king and deprive him of the seat of Indra.”

70-71. Vyāsa said:-- The wife of Indra accompanied the messenger of the Devī and quickly reached the presence of her husband Indra. She was very pleased to see her long-wished for husband, in the state disguise.

Here ends the Eighth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the praising of the Bhagavatī by the wife of Indra and on getting the sight of Indra in the Mahāpurānam, S'rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter IX
On Indra’s getting the fruits of Brahmahattyā
and on the downfall of king Nahusa

1-2. Vyāsa said:-- Indra was quite surprised to see in this state of solitude his dear wife S'achī, large-eyed and overwhelmed with much sorrow and spoke thus:-- “O Beloved! I am remaining here alone this desolate place unnoticed by all the Jīvas; O Auspicious faced One! How have you come to know this! And how is it that you have come here!”

3-5. S'achī said:-- O Lord of the Devas! I have been able to know this place where you are staying by the grace of Bhagavatī's Feet and I will get you back by Her grace. The Devas and Munis all united have installed the King Nahusa in your throne. That fellow says “O fair One! I am now made the King Indra; therefore you worship me as your husband.” And thus oppresses me always. O Destroyer of other's strength! That vicious one speaks to me thus; I am weak; What can I do to him?

6. Indra said:-- “O Beautiful One! I am now here waiting for the proper opportunity; O auspicious One! You should also make your mind calm and remain there, and wait for the proper time.”

7-12. Vyāsa said : -- O King! After Indra had spoken thus, S'achī Devī became sorrowful, drew a deep sigh and, trembling, said:-- “O Fortunate One! How can I stay there? That vicious man, puffed up with vanity and proud of his position will forcibly bring me under his control. The Devas and Munis say this to me out of his fear:-- O Beautiful One! The Lord of the Devas is now very much distressed with the arrows of the Cupid; therefore go and worship him. O Tormentor of foes! How can the Brāhmin Brihaspatī protect me, being himself powerless and under the control of the Devas. O Lord! This is now my grave anxiety; I am a weak woman, having none to protect me and therefore always under the guidance of a man. Fate is now against me; how can I keep myself religious? I am a chaste woman, devoted to my husband; I have got no shelter there; who will protect me when I fall into misery!

13-21. Indra said:-- “O Beautiful One! I will now tell you one means which, if you adopt, will no doubt preserve your character in times of crisis. Women cannot preserve their chastity when they are protected by others by thousand and one means; for lust penetrates into their restless minds and carries them to impure ways. It is the good and pure character that preserves a woman from a vicious course; therefore O Smiling One! You adopt this good conduct and character and remain steady in your place. In case that deceitful wicked King Nahusa shows his violence upon you, then take time and secretly cheat him, O Madālase! Go to him when there will be no other body present and say:--“O Lord of the world! Please come to me on a conveyance carried by the Risis (great ascetics), I will then be very delighted and gladly yield myself to you; this is certainly my vow.” O Beautiful One! When you will say thus, that King, blinded by passion, will engage the Munis for the carriers of his conveyance. The ascetics, then, will be angry and curse him; the Munis will certainly burn him by the fire of their wrath; and the Divine Mother will no doubt help you. He who remembers the lotus-feet of the Ambikā Devī never meets with any difficulties; and if there arises any difficulty, know certainly that it is for his immeasurable benefit. Therefore worship, with your whole heart, the Mother of the Universe, Who resides in the jewelled island (Mani Dvīpa) according to the words of the Guru Brihaspatī.

22-25. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing thus the Indra's words, S'achī Devī said “Let it be so” and went to Nahusa, filled with confidence and inspiration to carry on the future work. Nahusa was very glad to see S'achī Devī and spoke thus:-- “O Sweet-speaking One! Are you all right? I am now completely yours; you have fulfilled my word; therefore I say truly that I am your servant. O Gentle-speaking One! When you have come to me, know that I am very glad. O Smiling One! Do not feel any shame before me. I am now your devotee; worship me. O large eyed One! Speak out what is that dear thing that I can do for you? I will carry that out at once.”

26-27. S'achī said:-- “O Lord Vāsava! You have done all the works; now I have got one desire to ask from you, kindly fulfil this and then I will be yours. O One full of auspiciousness! Now fulfil my desire; I am speaking this to you.”

28. Nahusa said:-- “O Thou, having a face sweet like the Moon! Speak out your desire; I will carry it out. O Beautiful One with nice eye-brows! Even if that be unattainable, I will give that to you.”

29-31. S'achī said:-- “O King of Kings! I cannot trust you; Swear on oath that you will fulfill my desire. O King! A truthful King very rare on this earth; I will speak out my desire when I will be convinced that you are bound by truth. O King! When you will fulfil my desire, I will always remain under your control; this I speak truly to you.”

32. Nahusa said:-- “O Beautiful One! On all the sacrifices and gifts that I have ever made, I swear, on all my merits, that I will certainly carry out your word.”

33-37. S'achī said:-- “Indra has got for his vehicles the horse Uchchais'ravā, the Airāvata elephant and the chariot; Vāsudeva has got vehicle Garuda; Yama has got his buffalo; S'ankara his Bull; Brahmā his Swan; Kartika has got his peacock and Ganes'a has got his mouse. But now, O Lord of the Devas! I want to see your vehicle, never witnessed before: I want to see the Munis and the great ascetics, observing vows, to be your vehicle; this is not Visnu's, Rudra's nor of the Devas, and Rāks'asas. O King! Let the Munis carry your conveyance, this is my ever burning desire. O King of this earth! I know you the highest of all Devas; let your glory and splendour increase ever and ever; this is the intense desire reigning in my heart.”

38-56. Vyasa said:-- O King! Hearing S'achī's words, Nahusa, weak in intellect, laughed and beguiled by the Māyā of Bhagavatī began to praise her and said at once:-- “O Beautiful One! Truly you have made a nice suggestion of my vehicle. O One having luxuriant hairs! I will soon carry out your words. O Sweet-smiling One! Whoever is effeminate and of weak virility, he is never able to engage the Munis as his carriers; no doubt, my unbounded strength will be rendered manifest when I come to you on a vehicle carried by the Munis. What wonder is there that the seven Risis (the seven stars of the constellation Great Bear) and all the Devarsis would carry me, knowing me as the most capable and superior in all the three worlds by virtue of my sheer asceticism?” Vyāsa said:-- O King! The King Nahusa became very pleased and dismissed S'achī Devī. He, then, with a heart flamed with passion, called the Munis and said: --“O Munis! I am now become Indra and endowed with all powers thereof; therefore you all do my work without being at all surprised. I have got the seat of Indra but Indrānī is not coming to me. I called her to my presence and when I informed her of my desire, She had spoken to me with affection the following words:-- O Indra of the Devas! O Giver of one's honour! Better come to me on a vehicle carried by the Munis and do thus the one thing for me that I like. O Maharsis! To carry out this task is, indeed, difficult for me; therefore do you all unite and, out of mercy, do this for me in all its completeness. My heart is being always burnt, as I am very much attached to the wife of Indra; so I take refuge unto you to do this wonderful work for me.” Though this request was very indecent and greatly humiliating yet the Munis agreed to it, out of pity, and also impelled, as it were, by the great Fate. When the Great Seers, the Munis consented to this proposal, the King, whose heart was very much attached to the daughter of Pulomā, became very glad and getting on the beautiful vehicle carried by the Munis, told them, move on quickly (Sarpa, Sarpa). Then the King Nahusa, getting very much impassioned, touched with his feet the heads of the Munis, and, being as it were smitten by the arrows of cupid, began to whip frequently the Risi Agastya, the best of the ascetics, who devoured the Rāksasa Vātāpi, who was the husband of Lopāmudrā and who drank out the ocean, saying move on, move on (Sarpa, Sarpa another meaning of which is Snake). The Muni, then, became very angry, on being thus whipped, and cursed him saying:-- “'O Wicked One! As you are whipping me, saying Sarpa, Sarpa, so go and remain in the dense forest as a huge snake. When many years will elapse and when you will crawl on your own limb and suffer intense troubles, after that you will again come to heaven. You will be free from the curse when you will see the King Yudhisthira and hear from him the answers to several questions.”

57-67. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Thus cursed, the King Nahusa began to chant hymns to that best of the Munis, and, while praising, fell from the Heavens and instantly turned into a snake. Brihaspatī, then, quickly went to the Mānasarovara Lake and informed Indra everything in detail. Indra became very glad on hearing in detail of the downfall of the King Nahusa from Heaven and remained there gladly. When the Devas and Munis saw this downfall into the earth of Nahusa, they all went to the Lake Mānasarovara where Indra was staying. They then all encouraged Indra and honoured him by bringing him back to the Heavens. All the Devas and Risis installed Indra on the throne and then performed the Inauguration ceremony of the all auspicious Devī. On getting back his own throne. Indra, too, began to sport in the beautiful Nandana Garden with his dear consort S'achī, in the home of the Devas. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Indra had to suffer such severe hardships on account of his slaying the Maharsi Vis'varûpa, the Lord of the Asuras. Subsequently through the grace of the Devī, he got back his own seat. O King! Thus I have narrated before you  to my best, this excellent story of the killing of Vritrāsura and thus have answered your question. O Ornament of the Kuru family! The fruits will be exactly according to the Karma done. The effects of the Karma done must be borne whether they be auspicious or inauspicious. (So Indra had to suffer for his Karma, the killing of a Brāhmana.)

Here ends the Ninth Chapter of the Sixth Book on Indra's getting the fruits of his killing a Brāhmana and on the downfall of the King Nahusa from the Heavens in the Mahāpurānam S'rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter X
On the phase of Karma

1-5. Janamejaya said:-- “O Brāhmana! You have described in detail the wonderful character of Indra, his displacement from his Heavens, and his suffering many hardships and at the same time, you have described very widely the greatness of the Highest Goddess of the world. But one doubt has arisen in my mind that Indra was very powerful and when he got the lordship over the Devas, which means in other words that no trouble would pain him, how was it that he had to feel pain and agony? He got the Lordship of the Devas and his highest position by performing one hundred Horse Sacrifices; how was it, then that he was again displaced from that position? O Ocean of mercy! Kindly explain to me the causes of all these. You know everything; you are the best of the Munis and the maker of the Purānas; I am your devoted disciple; therefore nothing there can be that cannot be mentioned to me. So, O highly fortunate One! Kindly remove my doubts.” Sûta said:-- Thus asked by Janamejaya, Vyāsa the son of Satyavatī gladly spoke, in due order, the following words:--

6-29. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hear, then the causes that are certainly very wonderful. The seers say that Karma is of three kinds:-- Sañchita (accumulated), Vartamāna (present) and Prārabdha (commenced). Each of these is again subdivided into three, Sāttvik, Rājasik, and Tāmasik. The accumulated effects of Karmas done in many past lives is called Sañchita, O King! The effects of this Sānchita Karma, be it auspicious or inauspicious, be it for a long or for a short time, must have to be enjoyed by the beings whether they be good or bad. This Sañchita Karma done by the embodied beings in several previous births, can never be totally exhausted even in hundred Koti Kalpas without their being enjoyed. The Karma that is being done by a Jīva and that has not as yet been completed, that is called Vartamāna Karma. The Jīvas do this Vartamāna Karma, auspicious or inauspicious, in their present embodiments. At the time of birth, a part of the Sañchita Karma, the soul takes up for fructification. This part of Sañchita Karma is called Prārabdha Karma. This exhausts only when its effects have been fully borne out by the embodied soul. The beings cannot but bear the effects of this Prārabdha Karma. O King! Know this for certain that the effects of merits or demerits done previously must be borne by anybody, be he a Deva, or a man, or an Asura, or a Yaksa or a Gandharba. The acts done previously go to form the new births of all beings. When the Karma gets exhausted, then no more birth takes place. There is no doubt in this. Brahmā, Visnu, Rudra, Indra and the other Devas, the Dānavas, Yaksas, Gandharbas, all are under the control of this Karma. O King! Were it not so, how could they get bodies that are the causes of the enjoyments of pains and pleasures of all the beings. Therefore, O King! Out of the Sañchita Karmas done in many previous births, some Karmas get ripe in due time and they manifest themselves; those manifested Sañchita Karmas are called Prārabdha Karmas (those that are being enjoyed by an individual in the present birth). Impelled by this Prārabdha Karma, the Devas and the human beings, all do meritorious acts as well as sinful acts. Thus Indra out of his past meritorious acts attained his Indraship, and, out of his past sinful acts, committed the sin Brahmahattyā and so he was dislodged from his Indraship. What doubt can exist here? O King! So Nara and Nārāyana, the sons of Dharma, had to take births out of their previous Karmas; again Arjuna and Krisna were born out of their Karmic effects as part incarnations of this Nara and Nārāyana. The Munis describe this Karma as the basis of the Purānas. Know that he is born of a Deva who is very wealthy and prosperous; he who is not born of the part of a Muni, never writes any spiritual treatise on Jñana or Knowledge; he who is not born of Rudra, never worships Rudra; who is not born of a Deva never distributes rice in charity; he who is not born of S'rī Visnu, never becomes the king and lord of the earth. O King! The embodied souls derive their bodies certainly from Indra, Agni, Yama, Visnu, and Kuvera. Indra presides over lordship, Agni presides over energy, Yama presides over anger, and Visnu presides over strength. He who is powerful, fortunate, enjoying many enjoyments, learned, charitable, is said to be born of a Devāms'a. O Lord of the earth! Similarly the Pāndavas and Vāsudeva who was as glorious as Nārāyana were born of Devāms'as. O King! Know this as quite certain that the bodies of the Jīvas are the receptacles of pains and pleasures; and the embodied souls (Jīvas) experience alternately pleasure and pain. No Jīva is independent; he is always under the Great Fate. He experiences birth, death, pleasure and pain, not out of his self will, but compelled and guided, as it were, by the unseen Fate.

30-41. O King! How very strong is that Fate can easily be judged by the following. The Pāndavas were born in forest; then they went their own homes. They performed the Great Rājasûya Sacrifice by virtue of their own strength. After this they had to suffer their exiles in forest a much greater and more terrible hardship indeed! Next Arjuna performed a very hard asceticism when the Devas, not self-controlled, became pleased and granted him an auspicious boon. Still he could not extricate himself from the hands of the terrible hardship; nowhere could be found the fruits of the merits acquired in the past when he was afterwards remaining in exile in his human body in the forest! The severe tapasyā that he did in the Vadarikāsrama in his past incarnation as Nara, the son of Dharma, did not bear any fruit in his Arjuna birth. Mysterious and inexplicable are the ways and means of Karma with which the bodies of the several beings are concerned. How could men get an idea of it when the Devas themselves are at a loss to solve it. Bhagavān Vāsudeva had to take birth in the prison, a very critical and dangerous place; he was then carried by Vasudeva to the milkman Nanda's abode at Gokula; he remained there eleven years and thence came back to Mathurā where he killed by force Kamsa, the son of Ûgrasena. Then he released his sorrowful father and mother from the bonds of prison and made Ûgrasena, the King of Mathurā. Afterwards he went to Dvārkā city, out of the fear of Kāla Yavana, the King of the Mlechchas; thus Janārdana Krisna performed many great and heroic deeds, being impelled by Fate. Then he left his mortal coil at Prabhāsa, a place of pilgrimage, along with his relatives and acquaintances and then ascended to his Vaikuntha abode. All the Yādavas, sons, grandsons, friends, brothers, sisters and ladies of the houses all died under the curse of a Brāhmin. O King! I have thus described to you the inexplicable ways of Karma.

What more shall I say than the fact that Vāsudeva was killed by the arrows of a hunter!

Here ends the Tenth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the phase of Karma in the Mahapurānam S'rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XI
On the ascertainment of Dharma

1-10. Janamejaya said:-- “O King of the Brāhmanas! You said that Rāma and Krisna took their incarnations to relieve the burden of earth. One great doubt arises in my mind on this point. At the end of the Dvāpara Yuga, the Earth, burdened and oppressed very much, assumed, in anguish, the form of a cow and took refuge under Brahmā. Brahmā, then, went with the Earth to Visnu, the Lord of Laksmī, and thus prayed, “O Bibhu! Let You, with all the other gods, incarnate soon on earth at the house of Vāsudeva to relieve the Earth of Her load, as well as to protect the righteous.” When Brahmā thus prayed, the Bhagavān Visnu incarnated as the son of Devakī, along with Balarāma to lessen the burden of the Earth. And, in fact, he relieved, to a certain extent, the Earth by killing many vicious persons and many wicked and irreligious Kings. But, along with that, Bhīsma, Drona, Virāta, Drupada, Somādatta, and Karna, the son of the Sun were killed. But, See! that those who plundered afterwards His riches, and stole away the wives of Hari, those crores of Ābhīras, S’akas, Mlechchas, and Nisādas and other vicious people remained alive; and how could it, then, be said that the Earth was relieved when Krisna did not kill those people! O Fortunate One! When I see all the people in this Kālī Yuga addicted to sinful acts, this great doubt is not going out of my mind (how the Earth had been relieved of Her load).

11-14. Vyāsa said:-- O King! As the Yuga changes, so the people changes in course of time. Nothing can alter its course, for this is caused by the Yuga Dharma (the Dharma peculiar to each Yuga). Therefore if all the subjects that are considered wicked and vicious according to the law of the Yuga Dharma, then this creation would be destroyed; hence Krisna killed only those Dānavas and vicious Ksattriyas that were really the burden of Earth. O King! The persons that are devoted to religion take their births in the Satya Yuga; those that are fond of religion and wealth they become manifest in the Tretā Yuga; those that like Dharma (religion), Artha (wealth) and Kama (desires), they are born in the Dvāpara Yuga, and those that dote on wealth and lust, they are seen in the Kālī Yuga. O King! Know this as certain that these characteristics, peculiar to each Yuga, never vary; and know this too, that Time, the Lord of Dharma and Adharma, is always present.

15-18. The King said:-- “O Intelligent One! Where are those pious persons now that were born as high-souled religious persons in the Satya Yuga; where are those Munis now who were devoted to charity in the Tretā or Dvāpara Yuga? Again where will go these shameless and merciless persons, that are being seen now in this Kālī Yuga, these vicious creatures that revile their own Gurus? O Highly Intelligent One! I am very eager to know how these religious matters are brought to a decision and settlement; kindly describe to me in detail all these secret truths.”

19-30. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Persons, born in the Satya Yuga, that perform acts of merit, go to the Deva Loka. O King! The Brāhmins, Ksattriyas, Vais’yas and S’ûdras, if they remain in their own spheres and if they be devoted to religious acts, go to their respective spheres, earned by their meritorious deeds. By virtue of truth, mercy, charity, going to one’s own wives, not injuring animals, and having no jealousy and showing mercy equally towards all, by practising these universal forms of religion, even the lowest castes, e.g., washermen and others all go to the Paradise. So in the Tretā and Dvāpara Yugas men go to Heaven by virtue of their merits, earned in practising their own Dharma; but in this Kālī Yuga persons addicted to vicious acts go to terrible hells and remain there till the end of the Kālī Yuga when they will be again born in this earth. O King! When the Satya Yuga begins and the Kālī Yuga ends, at this junction time, the virtuous highsouled persons descend from Heaven and are born on this earth; and when the Kālī begins and the Dvāpara ends, the vicious souls come on the earth again from their hells. O King! Know this as the course of Time; it never becomes otherwise. See, then, that the Kālī Yuga tends to do vicious things and the people, therefore, become vicious. At times, the birth of beings takes place otherwise than the laws of Yugas, out of the strange combinations of Fate (i.e., good persons are seen in the Kālī and vicious persons are seen in the Satya). For this reason those that do meritorious acts in the Kālī Yuga are born as men in the Dvāpara; so the Dvāpara good persons take their births as men in the Tretā; and the Tretā good persons are born as men in the Satya Yuga. Again those who are vicious in the Satya Yuga become persons of the Kālī Yuga. The Jīvas suffer miseries on account of their own bad Karmas; they again suffer more miseries by doing over and over again those bad Karmas by virtue of the Yuga Dharma.

31. Janamejaya said:-- “O Bhagavān! Describe particularly the details of the Yuga Dharma. I am now very desirous to hear which Dharma is for which Yuga?”

32-54. Vyāsa said:-- O King! I will now show to you by example the influence of the religion peculiar to each Yuga; hear it attentively. O King! The hearts even of saints are quite disturbed by the Yuga Dharma. See! Your father was a religious and high-souled monarch; still the wicked Kālī defiled his mind and prompted him to do an act very insulting to a Brāhmana. Otherwise why would he, being a renowned prince amongst the Ksattriyas and a descendant of Yayāti, thus go and encircle a snake round the throat of an ascetic Brāhmin? Therefore, O King! All actions are being influenced by the Yuga Dharma. The Pundits, also recognise this. If you try your best to perform any religious act, even then the Yuga Dharma would prevail, yet you would be able to perform to a certain extent, a part of your intention. O King! In the Satya Yuga, the Brāhmins were versed in the Vedas, always devoted to worship the Highest Force, with an ardent desire to see the Devī; they were devoted to Gāyatrī with Pranava, devoted to the meditation of Gāyatrī, always reciting silently Gāyatrī, and the Māyāvīja Mantram, the chief mantram. In every village, the Brāhmins were very eager to erect temples of the Devī Mahā Māyā Ambikā and were truthful, merciful and pure and devoted to their own respective works. The Ksattriyas, skilled in the science of the highest knowledge, were ever engaged in doing things ordained by the Vedas and were always intent in protecting well their subjects. The Vais’yas did their cultivation and trade and the S’ûdras always served the other three castes. Thus, in the Satya Yuga, all the Varnas (castes) were devoted to the worship of the Devī Ambikā, the Highest S’akti; but in the Tretā Yuga, the observance of the religion declined a little and in the Dvāpara, it declined very much. O Ornament of Indra! Those who were Rāksasas before, they become the Brāhmins of the Kālī Yuga; they are the flowers of atheists, deceptors of men, untruthful, without any Vedas, devoid of the Vedic practices, arrogant, cunning, egoistic, and capable only to serve the S’ûdras. Some of them try to find fault with the Sanātan Dharma and are the promulgators of various other creeds, wicked, fallen from their religion and given to much talking. O King! As Kālī gets stronger, so the true religion declines and ultimately dies; and, in that proportion, the Ksattriyas, Vais’yas and S’ûdras are also devoid of their religion. When Kālī will be in full swing, the Ksattriyas, Vais’yas and S’ûdras will all be untruthful, vicious; the Brāhmins will act like S’ûdras and will accept other’s gifts. O King! The women in the Kālī Yuga would be very passionate, avaricious and ignorant. They would be very powerful and insolent, wilful, vicious and untruthful and so would be a source of pain to the society. They would think themselves vainly religious and learned and would be always ready to impart religious instructions and deceive their own husbands and be exceedingly vicious. O King! Our minds are purified by the food that we take; when our minds are pure, the Light of Dharma shines clearly. The customs and practices of Varna and Ās’rama Dharmas get intermixed with each other and so arises the fault of Dharma S’amkara (i.e., mixture of the several parts of religion with each other). When the Dharma S’amkara creeps in, the Varna S’ankara is seen (i.e., purity in blood and other matters of birth are lost). Thus, in the Kālī Yuga, all the Dharmas will gradually die out and ultimately nothing will be heard about one’s own religion. O King! In this Yuga even the religious high-souled persons will be found to do irreligious acts! The nature of Kālī is so; nobody will be able to quit it. O King! Thus, in this age, men naturally commit vicious things; with ordinary means, therefore, no one becomes able to extricate from the worst vicious habits.

55-56. Janamejaya said:-- “O Bhagavān! You know all and you are versed in all the S’āstras; what will be the fate of so many persons in this Kālī Yuga? If there be any path, kindly describe it to me.”

57-65. Vyāsa said:-- O King! There is only one path and none other which can save a man from the sin of this Kālī; and that is this:-- The Jīvas must meditate on the lotus-feet of the Highest Devī for the purification of all their faults and sins. O King! There is so much strength in Her sin-destroying Name, that the amount of sin in this world falls much less in proportion to that. Where, then, is the cause of fear? Her Name, uttered at random, even in an unconscious state, bestows so much unspeakable results that even Hari, Hara and others have not the capacity to know that. O King! The mere remembrance of the name of S’rī Devī is an atonement for a multitude of sins; then it behoves that every man, afraid of the Kālī Yuga, residing in a place of pilgrimage, ought to remember incessantly the Name of the Highest Deity. Even if anybody cuts, pierces, and kills all the beings in this whole world, he won’t be touched with the sins, if he bows down, with devotion, before the Devī. O King! I have narrated to you all the secret truths of all the S’āstras. Consider all these fully and always worship the lotus-feet of the Devī. All men are reciting silently the Japam called the Ajapā Gāyatrī; still they do not know the glory of it; such is the powerful influence of Māyā. All the Brāhmanas are reciting in the depth of their hearts the Gāyatrī Mantram, yet they do not know the glory of it (otherwise they would have been liberated); such is the great influence of Māyā. O King! I have described to you all that you asked me about the Yuga Dharmas; what more do you want to hear?

Here ends the Eleventh Chapter of the Sixth Book on the ascertainment of Dharma in the Mahā Purānam, S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam, of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XII
On the cause of the war between Ādi and Baka

1-2. The King said:-- “O Best of Munis! Tell me the names of the holy places of pilgrimage on the surface of this earth, the holy Ksetras and the holy rivers; what are the fruits acquired in bathing there and in making charitable gifts as well; also what are the rules of the journeys and acts there are to be conducted?”

3-34. Vyāsa said:-- Hear; I am describing to you various Tīrthas or places of pilgrimage as well as those that are highly extolled as the best places favourite to the Devī. Amongst the rivers the following are reckoned as chief and holy:-- The Ganges, Jumnā, Sarasvatī, Narmaddā, Gandakī, Sindhu, Gomatī, Tamasā, Cavery, Chandrahāgā, Vetravatī, Charmanvatī, Saraju, Tāpī, and Sāvramatī. Besides these, there are hundreds of rivers on the surface of this earth; of them, those that fall into the ocean, they are holier and those that have not reached the ocean are less holy. Of those rivers that fall into the ocean, those that always flow with great current, they are comparatively holier; but in the two months S’rāvan and Bhādra (15th July - 15th September) all the rivers are considered as if they are during their menstruation periods; at this time also some rivers carry water of the rains just sufficient to supply the villagers with water. O King! The following are the famous places of pilgrimages calculated to bestow merits:-- Puskara, Kuruksettra, the holy Dharmāranya, Pravāsa, Prayāga, Naimisāranya, and Arbudāranya. O King! Of the mountains, the following are considered as sacred:-- S’rīs’aila, Sumeru, Gandhamādana; of the lakes, the following are very holy and very famous:-- Mānasarovara, Vindusarovara and Aksoda; these are the chief lakes. To those Munis that meditate on their Ātman, all the hermitages are sacred; still the hermitage of Badri is always considered very sacred and the most celebrated; here Nara and Nārāyana, the two famous Munis, practised their asceticism. The Vāmanās’rama and S’atayûpās’rama are also well known; thus every hermitage is named after the Muni that practised asceticism there. Thus innumerable holy places on the surface of the earth are mentioned by the Munis as tending to sanctify the hearts of the persons. At all these holy places, the Devī is worshipped in special sites consecrated to Her. All the sins are destroyed by their mere sight. The devotees of the Devī stay there, with rules obeyed. I will mention afterwards some of these places in the course of my narrations. O Best of kings! Going to these holy places, charity, vow, sacrifices, asceticism and good acts all depend on one another. The holy places of pilgrimages, asceticism, and observance of vows depend on the purity of the articles (Dravya S’uddhi), on the purity and one pointedness of actions (Kriyā S’uddhi) and on the purity of the mind and heart (Chitta S’uddhi). Some may attain, at times, the Dravya S’uddhi and Kriyā S’uddhi; but every one finds it very difficult and, indeed, rarely get the Chitta S’uddhi. O King! This mind always tries to seek shelter with various objects and is, therefore, always restless. How, then, can the purity of mind be effected, with ease, when it is occupied with all sorts of thoughts on various objects. Cupidity, anger, greed, pride, and egoism, these bring about all sorts of obstacles in the holy places of pilgrimages, in practising tapasyā and in observing vows. O King! Non-injury, truthfulness, non-stealing, chastity and purity, controlling of senses, and observing one’s own religion, all these bring about the fruits of the labour in visiting all tīrthas. They bestow fruits that can be obtained by visiting all the tīrthas. During one’s pilgrimage, one forsakes one’s Nitya Karma (daily duties) and one has to come in contact with various persons. Hence one’s journey becomes fruitless; rather it becomes a source of sin. The waters of the sacred places can only wash the outside dirts and the impurities of the physical bodies; they can never wash the impurities of their inner minds. Were it the fact that the waters of the tīrthas could purify their minds, why was it, then, that the Munis, residing on the banks of the Ganges, and devoted to God, ever indulged themselves with feelings of jealousy and enmity against each other. The humble Munis like Vas’istha, and the Risis like Vis’vāmitra were always entangled in love and hatred and they were ever impatient with anger. Therefore it is evident that the internal purification, the purification of heart, the bathing in the Gñān Gangā flowing within, no doubt removes more the dirt than the Ganges and other places of pilgrimages. O King! No doubt this fact must be admitted on all hands that one’s impurity of mind is washed away if by the strange combination of Fate, one comes in intimate contact with a man possessed of the Divine Knowledge. O King! The Vedas or S’āstras, vows or austerities, sacrifices or gifts none can purify the heart. See! Vas’istha, the son of Brahmā, though versed in the Vedas and residing on the banks of the Ganges, was under the control of love, hatred and other infirmities. Out of the enmity of Vis’vāmitra and Vas’istha, arose the great battle named Ādi Baka, astonishing even to the Gods. In this, the ascetic Vis’vāmitra was cursed by Vas’istha, on account of some curse in connection with the king Haris’chandra and had to take his birth as a crane (Baka). The Risi Vas’istha was cursed also by Vis’vāmitra and was born as a bird named S’arāri. Thus the two powerful Risis were born as Ādi Baka and lived on the banks of the Mānasarovara and they fought for full ten thousand years (ajuta) terribly, out of anger, with their nails and beaks like two maddened lions.

35-36. The King asked:-- “O Muni! Why were the two Maharsis, the two great ascetics and devoted to religion, involved in enmity with each other? Both of them were intelligent; how was it that they knowing the act of cursing to be a source of pain to men, cursed each other so painfully?”

37-48. Vyāsa said:-- O King! In former times, there was born in the solar dynasty a king Haris’chandra, the son of Tris’anku; he was the best of the kings and reigned before Rāmchandra. That King had no issue and therefore promised to Varuna, “O Lord of water and ocean! If I get a son born to me, I will perform a sacrifice, called Naramedha, where I will sacrifice my son for your propitiation.” Varuna was very pleased with the king when he made such a vow; and the exquisitely beautiful queen held the foetus in the womb. Seeing his wife in the family way, the king was very pleased and performed all the purificatory ceremonies pertaining to the foetus in the womb. O King! When the queen was delivered of a son endowed with all auspicious signs, the king Haris’chandra was very glad and performed duly all the Jāta Karma (natal) ceremonies and distributed as charity big sums of gold and many cows giving good quantities of milk. When the festivities on the birth of the child were celebrated in the palace on a grand scale, Varuna, the Lord of Waters, assuming the form of a Brāhmin, came up there. The King, too, honoured him duly with seat and worshipped him regularly and asked him about his purpose, when Varuna spoke to him:-- “O King! I am Varuna, the Lord of Waters; you promised before that you would perform Naramedha sacrifice where you would sacrifice your son; now do those things and keep your words true.” The King became very much confused and was very much pained at heart. He then checked his mental feelings of pain and spoke to the Deva Varuna, with folded hands:-- “O Lord! I will do the sacrifice duly and fulfil the promise that I made before you and keep my word. But, O Best of the Devas! My legal wife will be pure from her Sûtikā-S’auchak after one month, when I will perform the Naramedha sacrifice.”

49-53. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing thus the words of the king Haris’chandra, Varuna returned to his own abode; the King also became glad, but he was somewhat anxious for fear of the destruction of the child. When one month was complete, the sweet-speaking Varuna, the holder of the noose, assuming the form of a very pure Brāhmin, again came there to the palace of the king to examine him. The King worshipped him duly and gave him the seat to sit and spoke, with humility, the following reasonable words:-- “O Lord! My son is not yet purified; how can he be tied to the sacrificial post for being immolated? Therefore I will perform that sacrifice when the boy becomes cleansed after a purificatory rite and becomes a Ksattriya. O Deva! If you know me as your humble servant, have mercy on me; I will then consider myself as blessed. See! The children, not passed through purificatory rites, are not entitled to any act; therefore wait for some time longer.”

54-56. Varuna said:-- “O King! You are deceiving me and putting off the time longer and longer; I now see that you were issueless before and now that you have got a son, you are bound up in an indissoluble tie of affection for a son. Whatever it be, I now go back to my home at your pitiful request; I will wait for some time longer and I will come again. O child! Let you then be true to your words; if it be otherwise, I will surely curse you and thus give vent to my angry feelings.”

57. The King said:-- O Lord of the Waters! After the completion of the Samāvartan ceremony (a pupil’s return home after finishing his holy study), I will duly sacrifice my son at the great Naramedha sacrifice; there is no doubt.

58-71. Vyāsa said:-- Varuna was very pleased at the King’s words and quickly went back saying “Let it be so.” The king also became comforted. On the one hand, the king Haris’chandra’s son became widely known by the name of Rohita; and as he got older, he became gradually versed in all the sciences and became very clever and intelligent. That boy then came to know by degrees the cause of the sacrifice in full detail; and knowing that his death is quite certain, became very afraid and quickly fled away from the King and went and stayed in caves of mountains with a fearful heart. Then, when the proper time came, Varuna came up there to the royal palace, desirous to have the sacrifice and spoke to the King thus:-- “O King! Now the prescribed time has come; therefore perform the sacrifice that you have resolved to celebrate.” The King was very much pained to hear this and spoke with a very sad appearance:-- “O Best of the Devas! What can I do now?

My son has fled away out of the fear of his life; I do not know his whereabouts.” Varuna became very angry at these words and cursed him thus:-- “O Liar! You are an hypocrite pundit; therefore you deceived me frequently. Let therefore the disease dropsy come and attack your body.” Varuna, the Holder of the noose, cursing thus, went back to his own abode. The King was attacked with that disease, remained in his own residence, afflicted with cares and anxieties. Rohita, the son of the king Haris’chandra, heard about the severe illness of his father when he was very much tormented with that disease, as the curse of Varuna. One day a traveller told him:-- “O son of the King! Your father is very ill with dropsy, due to the curse, and is very sorry. Certainly your brain has turned wrong; vain is your coming in this world; you have passed your life to no purpose, for you are staying still in this mountain cave, abandoning your sorrowful father. Certainly you are a bad disobedient son; what use is there in your keeping up this body? What purpose will be served by your birth? When you have got this body, you have abandoned that father and are staying in this solitary cave. Know this as certain that to sacrifice one’s life is the duty of a good and obedient son; therefore what more shall I say now than this that your father the king Haris’chandra ailing from a severe illness is very sorry for you and is always weeping.”

72-74. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing from the passerby these good words, the prince Rohita wanted to go to his sorrowful father attacked with disease when Indra assuming a Brāhmin form came up to him and began to speak to him when he was alone like one who was filled with mercy. O Son of a King! You are a fool; are you not positively acquainted with the fact that your father is in trouble; why then do you intend in vain to go there?

Here ends the Twelfth Chapter on the cause of the war between Ādi and Baka in the Sixth Book of the Mahāpurānam of S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XIII
On the description of the battle between Ādi
and Baka after the discourse on S’unahs’epha

1-6. Indra said:-- “O Prince! The King Haris’chandra promised before to Varuna that he would celebrate for his propitiation the great Naramedha sacrifice when he would offer his own son as a victim to be immolated. O Prince! You are very intelligent; can’t you grasp this idea that your father has become merciless due to his suffering in this illness and no sooner you go there than he will make you the victim and tie you to the sacrificial post when you will be slaughtered.” The indomitable Indra thus prohibiting the son, he began to stay there deluded by the Māyā of the great Mahā Māyā. O King! Thus whenever the prince heard of his father’s severe illness, he wanted to go to his father, Indra repeatedly used to go to him and prevent him from doing so. On the other hand, the King Haris’chandra became very much afflicted, and, seeing his family Guru all-knowing well-wisher Vas’istha close by, asked him, “O Bhagavān! what am I to do now? I am now very impatient with the agonies of this disease and am very weak; besides I am very much afraid of it. Kindly give me a good advice and save me.”

7-9. Vas’istha said:-- “O King! There is a good remedy for the cure of your disease. It is stated in the S’āstras that the sons are of thirteen kinds; Aurasa, Ksattraja, Datrima, Krītrima; etc. Therefore pay the reasonable price and buy one good Brāhmin boy and perform your sacrifice with that boy. O King! Thus Varuna will be pleased and you will be cured of your disease.”

10-24. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing thus the words of Vas’istha, the King Haris’chandra addressed to his minister:-- “O Minister-in-Chief! You are very sharp and intelligent, therefore you better try your best and seek in my kingdom a Brāhmin boy. In case a poor Brāhmin be willing, out of his love for money, to give over his son, then give him any amount he wants and bring his son. O Minister! By all means, bring a Brāhmin boy for this sacrifice; in other words, do not be miserly or act lazily to perform my business. You should pray to any Brāhmin thus:-- Take this money and give your son, who will be sacrificed in a sacrificial ceremony as a victim.” Thus ordered, the minister sought for a Brāhmin boy in towns after towns, villages after villages, and houses after houses. Till, at last, he came to know that in his kingdom there was a poor distressed Brāhminn that he wanted and purchased his second son named S’unahs’epha and brought him before the King. And handed him over to the King, saying that this Brāhmin boy is fit for the sacrificial victim. The King then gladly brought the best Brāhmins versed in the Vedas for the performance of the sacrifice, and collected all the articles requisite for the purpose. When the sacrifice was commenced, the great Muni Vis’vāmitra, seeing S’unahs’epha tied, prohibited the King and said:-- “O King! Do not be so bold as to sacrifice this boy; let this boy be free. O long-lived One! I am asking this thing from you today and if you obey it, certainly it will do good to you. O King! This boy S’unahs’epha is crying; his cries are paining my heart and I am feeling pity for him. Hear my word and free this boy out of mercy. See! The purehearted Ksattriyas, in ancient days, used to sacrifice their own bodies and thus preserve others’ bodies, so that they might attain the Heavens. And now you are killing this Brāhmin boy forcibly so that you may preserve your own body; judge how vicious is this your act! Be merciful to this boy. O King! Everyone likes his own body to the same extent; you are feeling this yourself; therefore if you take my word, then quit this boy.” named Ajīgarta, who had three sons. Then the minister gave to the Brāhmi

25-36. Vyāsa said:-- O King! The King Haris’chandra was ailing very much; hence be did not pay any heed to the Muni’s words and did not quit the boy. Thereupon the very fiery spirited Vis’vāmitra became very angry with the King. Then Vis’vāmitra, the son of Kus’ika, the foremost of the knowers of the Vedas, shewed mercy on S’unahs’epha and gave him the “Varuna Mantram.” S’unahs’epha, very much afraid to lose his life, earnestly repeatedly remembered Varuna and uttered that mantram in pluta tone (lengthened or prolonged). Varuna, too, the ocean of mercy, knowing that the Brāhmin boy was praising him with hymns came up to that spot and freed S’unahs’epha from his bondage and freed the King also from his disease and went back to his own abode. Thus the Maharsi Vis’vāmitra became very glad to rescue the Muni’s son from the jaws of death. The King Haris’chandra did not observe the words of Vis’vāmitra; hence the son of Gādhi harboured within his heart anger towards the King. One day while the King Haris’chandra was riding in a forest and there, at midday, on the banks of the river Kaus’ik, when he desired to kill a boar, Vis’vāmitra in the garb of an old Brāhmin asked from him everything that he had, including his dominion and thus cunningly took away everything from the King. The Maharsi Vas’istha, seeing his Yajamāna Haris’chandra suffering much, became wounded and felt pain in his mind. One day when he met casually with Vis’vāmitra in a forest, he said:-- “O wicked Ksattriya! A disgrace to your family! You have in vain put on the garb of a Brāhmin; your religion is like a crane; you ate full of vanity; you boast for nothing. The best of kings, Haris’chandra is my client; be is faultless; still, O Fool! Why are you giving him so much trouble. As you are religious as a crane is religious, so take your birth as a crane.” Vis’vāmitra, thus cursed by Vas’istha, cursed Vas’istha in return, and said:-- “O Vas’istha! As long as I will remain a crane, so long you also remain as S’arāli or Ādi bird.”

37-42. Vyāsa said:-- O King! The two angry Munis thus cursed each other and the two were born as Crane and S’arāli or Ādi bird. The crane Vis’vāmitra built its nest on the top of a tree on the Mānasarovara lake and began to live there. Vas’istha, too, assumed the form of an Ādi bird, and built his nest on the top of another tree and lived there. Thus the two Risis spent their days in full enmity towards each other. These two birds used to shriek so terribly loud that they became a nuisance to all; they fought daily with each other. They used to strike each other with beaks and wings and nails and thus they were covered all over their bodies with cuts and wounds and they were smeared with blood. They began to look like Kims’uka trees. Thus the two Risis, in the shape of birds, in their states of bondage, due to each other’s curse, passed many years there.

43. Janamejaya said:-- “O Brāhmana! Kindly tell me how Vas’istha and Kaus’ika, the two Risis, became free from their curses; I am very curious to hear this.”

44-54. Vyāsa said:-- Brahmā, the Grandsire of his subjects, came there with all the Devas, filled with mercy, on seeing those two Risis at war against each other. Brahmā, the Lotus-seated, made them desist from such a fight, consoled them and freed both of them from each other’s curses. Then the Devas went back to their own abodes and the illustrious lotus-seated Brahmā went to the Satyaloka, seated on his Swan. Maharsi Vas’istha and Vis’vāmitra became then friends and were tied with bonds of affection at the advice of Brahmā; they went back to their own Ās’ramas. O King! Now see, that the Maharsi Vas’istha, the son of Mitrā-Varuna, fought for nothing with Vis’vāmitra, so painful to both the parties. Who, then, amongst the human beings, the Dānavas or the Devas can conquer his Ahamkāra (egoism) and be always happy? Therefore the Chitta-S’uddhi, the purity of the heart (that purity which imparts to man the blessedness of God-vision) is very difficult even for the high-souled persons; with the greatest caution and utmost effort one has to practise for that. To those persons, that are void of this Chitta S’uddhi, it is all vain to go to places of pilgrimage, to make charities, to practise tapasyā, to be truthful; in fact, anything, which is the means to attain Dharma, becomes useless. O King! S’raddhā (Faith) is of three kinds:-- (1) Sāttvikī, (2) Rājasikī and (3) Tāmasikī to all persons in all their religious matters. The Sāttvik faith is the only one of the three that yields entire results; and it is very rare in this world. The Rājasik faith, done according to due rules, yields half the results thereof and the Tāmasik faith is fruitless and inglorious; the Tāmasik faith arises with those persons that are overwhelmed with lust, anger, greed, etc. Therefore, O King! Keep to the company of the good and hear the S’āstras, Vedānta, etc., and free the heart of worldly desires and then concentrate it to the worship of the Devī and live in a sacred place of pilgrimage. Men afraid and troubled with the defects of the Kālīyuga, should always take the name of the Devī, sing praises, and meditate on Her lotus feet. Thus the Jīvas will not have any fear of Kālī and the fallen vicious persons will easily be able to cross this ocean of the world and be free. There is no doubt in this.

Here ends the Thirteenth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the description of the battle between Ādi and Baka after the discourse on S’unahs’epha in S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam, the Mahāpurānam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XIV
On the birth of Vas’istha from Mitrā Varuna

1-2. Janamejaya said:-- “O Bhagavān! Maharsi Vas’istha was the mind-born son of Brahmā; how is it then that you have named him as Maitrā-Vārunī. Is it that he got this name by some action or by some Gunas? Kindly tell me the origin of this name, O Best of speakers!”

3-4. Vyāsa said:-- O King! It is quite true that the illustrious Vas’istha was the noble son of Brahmā but he had to quit that body due to the curse of the King Nimi and he had to take a second body from Mitrā Varuna; hence he is named in this world as Maitrā-Vārunī.

5-6. The King said:-- “O Bhagavān! How was it that the religious Vas’istha, the best of the Munis, the son of Brahmā was cursed by the King? Oh! The Munis have to suffer the dreadful curse of Ksattriya kings! This seems very wonderful to me. O Knower of Dharma! Why did that king curse the innocent Muni? I am very curious to hear the cause of this; kindly tell me the cause of the curse.”

7-30. Vyāsa said:-- O King! I told you already in particular all the causes of these. This Samsāra is pervaded by the three Gunas of Māyā, Sāttva, Rāja and Tāma. Whether the kings practise their Dharma or the ascetics practise their tapas, all their actions are interpenetrated with these Gunas; therefore they cannot shine so brightly. The Kings, Munis performed very severe penances and austerities under the influence of lust, anger, greed and Ahamkāra. O King! All, whether they be the Ksattriyas or the Brāhmanas, who perform their sacrifices overpowered with this Rājo Guna, really, none of them performs these actions guided by Sāttva Guna. The King Nimi was cursed by the Risi and the Risi was cursed again by the King Nimi; thus they met with greater calamities and painful sufferings, the fruits from the hands of the powerful Fate. O King! In this world of the three Gunas, it is very difficult for the beings to get the Dravya S’uddhi, Kriyā S’uddhi, and the pure effulgent Chitta S’uddhi, O King! Know this as the influence wielded by the Highest S’akti, the Mother of this Universe. Nobody is able to overstep it; but he, whom She favours, can cross in a moment this world, bounded by the three Gunas. What more can be said than the fact that Hari, Hara, and Brahmā and the other Gods cannot free themselves without Her grace. Moreover, the sinners like Satyavrata and others become free when Her Grace comes upon them. Nobody in these three worlds can know what reigns in Her mind; again, this is also a certain fact that She gets Herself bound by Her own will to Her devotees. Therefore it is extremely desirable that one should have recourse to Sāttvikī devotion for the complete removal of faults and sins. And as the devotion with attachment and vanity is always injurious to men, therefore it is highly beneficial to quit it; there is no doubt in this. O King! There was a king named Nimi, born of the family of Iksāku. He was beautiful, well qualified, virtuous, truthful, charitable, endearing to his people, a sacrificer, of pure conduct and manners, ready to govern his subjects, intelligent and endowed with knowledge. For the benefit of the Brāhmanas, that high-souled king established a city named Jayantupur in close vicinity to the hermitage of Gautama. Thus some time passed when this Rājasik idea arose in his mind that “I will perform a sacrifice extending for a good many years when I will give exhorbitant Daksinās (remunerations to the priests and Brāhmins).” Getting permission from his own father Iksāku, he began to collect all the ingredients necessary for the sacrifice, as advised by the high-souled persons. He invited the all-knowing Munis and ascetics, versed in the Vedas and in conducting sacrifices, e.g., Bhrigu, Angirā, Vāmadeva, Gautama, Vas’istha, Pulastya, Richika, Pulaha, Kratu and others, all well-versed in the Vedas. Then that religious King Nimi, collecting all the materials necessary for sacrifice worshipped his own Guru Vas’istha and then spoke to him (the Guru) with great humility. O Best of Munis! I will perform a sacrifice; kindly perform this my sacrificial act; you are my Guru and therefore you know everything; so do this sacrifice for me. All the articles for this purpose are brought and cleansed. O Guru! Know that for five thousand years I mean to be engaged in this sacrifice, this is my Sankalpa (will). I will worship the Goddess Ambikā in this sacrifice and for Her satisfaction I am arranging for it according to the prescribed rules. Hearing the King Nimi’s words, Vas’istha said:-- “O best of Kings! Indra, the King of the Devas, has already selected me for his sacrificial ceremony. Now Indra is ready to do the sacrifice for the propitiation of the Highest S’akti and I have initiated him for five hundred years. Therefore, O King! You will have to wait till I complete the Indra’s Yajñā. After fully completing all his works, I will come here. Therefore, O King! Wait till then.”

31-42. The King said:-- “O Best of Munis! I have already invited other Munis for this sacrifice and have collected all the materials; how, then, can I wait for you? O Brāhmana! You are the foremost of those versed in the Vedas and you are the family Guru of the noble Iksāku. How is it, then, avoiding my work you are ready to go elsewhere O Best of Brāhmins! Under the uncontrollable greed of wealth you have lost all senses and you are ready to go away without doing my work. This does not behove you.” O King! Though thus tempted by the King Nimi, the Risi Vas’istha went to the Indra’s sacrifice. The King, too, became absent-minded and selected for the sacrifice the Risi Gautama. He then commenced his sacrificial ceremony close to the ocean by the side of the Himālayān range and gave profusely the Daksinās. The King Nimi was engaged in this sacrificial act for five thousand years. In this the Rittviks (priests) were worshipped with sufficient wealth and cows; they were extremely glad. Then, when the five hundred years extending sacrifice of Indra was completed, the Risi Vas’istha came to see the King Nimi’s sacrifice and waited there to see the King. The king was then asleep; so the servants did not awake him from his sleep; and the King did not come to the Risi. Feeling insult at this, the Maharsi Vas’istha became infuriated with rage. Not seeing the King, he became very angry; and, subject to this, he cursed the King, When I am your lifelong Guru, especially when I prohibited you and you have forsaken me and selected another Guru and by your sheer force you are initiated, then be devoid of your body. Let your body fall off today.

43-50. Vyāsa said:-- The King’s attendants, hearing thus the curse given by Vas’istha to the King, instantly awoke him from his sleep and informed him that the Risi Vas’istha not seeing you, became very angry. The King Nimi, quite sinless, went then to the angry Vas’istha and humbly spoke to him the following reasonable words, pregnant with meaning. O Knower of Dharma! I am your Yajamāna; though I repeatedly requested you to perform my sacrifice, yet you quitted me out of the covetousness and went somewhere else. I cannot be charged with any fault. You are the foremost of Brāhmins; and knowing that contentment is the substance of your Dharma, you did not feel ashamed to do this blameable act. You are the son of Brahmā; and, being versed in the Vedas and Vedāngas, you are yet unaware of the subtle and very difficult nature of the Brāhminic religion. Now you want to cast your own fault on my shoulders and you are trying in vain to curse me. Anger is more to be blamed than Chāndāla! The wise men should overcome it by all means. When you, infuriated with rage, have been able to curse me for nothing, then I now curse you, “Let your this body, inflamed with anger, drop off.” O King! Thus the King cursed the Muni and the Muni cursed the King; and both of them were, therefore, very sorry.

51-52. Vas’istha then became troubled with cares and took shelter with Brahmā and informing him about the great curse given by the King Nimi said:-- Father! The King has cursed me saying, “Let your body fall off today. Now the great trouble due to the falling off of the body has arisen. What am to do now?

53-69. O Father! Kindly tell me from whom shall I take my birth and take such means as I can get a body like what I have now. Also by Your unbounded power, do so that I can retain the knowledge in that body as I have at present; You are fully competent to do this.” O King! Hearing thus the words of Vas’istha, Brahmā spoke thus to his dear son:-- Go and enter into the Tejas (essence) of Mitrā Varuna and remain contented; then you will get, in due time, a body not born of any womb and you will be again religious, truthful, knower of the Vedas, all-knowing and worshipped by all; there is no doubt in this. When Brahmā said this, the Maharsi Vas’istha bowed down to the Grand Sire, and circumambulating him, went to the abode of Varuna. Then he quitted his excellent body; and, with his subtle body, the part of his Jīva, entered into the body of Mitrā Varuna. Then once on a time Urvas’ī, exquisitely beautiful and lovely, surrounded by her comrades, went wilfully into the abode of Varuna. Mitrā-Varuna, the two Devas became very passionate to see that Apsarā (the celestial nymph) endowed with youth and beauty and being enchanted with the arrows of cupid, and, being senseless, addressed to the Deva Kanyā Urvas’ī, beautiful in all her parts, thus:-- “O Lovely One! Seeing you, we are very much troubled with the arrows of cupid; O Beautiful One! Select us and remain and enjoy here at your pleasure.” When they said thus, Urvas’ī became attached to them; and, under their control, began to stay in the house of Mitrā Varuna. When Urvas’ī began to remain there, strongly attached to them, the semen of Mitrā Varuna dropped in an uncovered jar. And the two beautiful sons of the Risis were born out of that; Agasti was the first child and Vas’istha the second. Thus, out of the semen of Mitrā Varuna, the two ascetics were born. The first Agasti turned out a great ascetic in his childhood and resorted to forest; Iksāku the best of Kings, selected Vas’istha as his family priest. O King! Iksāku, the best of Kings, nursed him for the welfare of his own line; the more so, because to know that he was the Muni Vas’istha; and thus he was very pleased with him. Janamejaya! Thus I have described to you about the getting of another body by Vas’istha, due to the curse of Nimi, and have also described his re-birth in Mitrā-Varuna’s family.

Here ends the Fourteenth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the birth of Vas’istha from Mitrā Varuna in S’rī Mad Devi Bhāgavatam, the Mahā Purānam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XV
On the Nimi’s getting of another body
and the beginning of the story of Haihayas

1. Janamejaya said:-- “The getting back of another similar body by Vas’istha is certainly described by you. Now tell me how the King Nimi got another body.”

2-31. Vyāsa said:-- O King! The Risi Vas’istha only got back his body; but the King Nimi did not get back his body what had been cursed by Vas’istha. The priests engaged at the sacrifice by Nimi began to consider, when the Risi Vas’istha cursed him, in the following way:-- Oh! What a wonderful thing is this? Before the sacrifice is complete, the King Nimi has been cursed; this is against what we had expected; What can we do? What is inevitable must come to pass; how can we thwart it? By various Mantrams, they kept alive the body of the King in which breathing was still going on a little; and they prevented the body from decaying by worshipping the body with various Mantra S’aktis and kept it in a stationary state. When the sacrificial ceremony was completed, the Risis began to praise the gods with hymns whereon the Devas became pleased and came to that spot. When the Munis informed the Devas fully of the condition of the King’s body, the Devas spoke to the sorrowful King thus:-- “O Performer of good vows! We are all pleased with your sacrifice; now ask boons from us. O King! You ought to get an excellent birth as the fruit of performing this sacrifice. So ask what body, the body of a Deva or of a man, you desire? Or you can ask, if you like, for another similar body, that your priest Brihaspati has got quitting his first body whereby he has become proud and is now staying in the Loka of Yama.” O King! At these words the King Nimi was very glad and spoke to them thus:-- O Devas! I have no aspiration for the body that is always liable to destruction; I therefore want to reside on the top of the eyelids of all the beings. Therefore I ask this boon that I be able to move in the shape of Vāyu (air) on the top of the eyes of all the beings. Thus said, the Devas spoke to the soul of Nimi:-- “O King! Pray to the most auspicious Deity, the Devī, the Highest Goddess. She has been pleased with this sacrifice; therefore your prayer will certainly be granted.” Hearing thus, the King began to pray with various hymns with intense devotion, in tremulous voice, the Devī. The Devī became pleased and appeared before him. Seeing Her shining like a crore of suns and looking exceedingly lovely and beautiful, all the persons there became very happy. They began to think themselves as very blessed and as having done all what they had to do. Knowing the Devī Bhagavatī pleased, the King asked this boon from her:-- “O Devī! Give me that knowledge, pure and simple, whereby final liberation is obtained. Also, I may be able to reside on the top of the eyes of all the beings.” The Devī, the Lord of the Devas, the Mother of the World being highly pleased, said thus:-- “O King! At the expiry of this your Prārabdha Karma, you will acquire pure knowledge and you will reside on the tops of the eyes in the shape of Vāyu, and through your residing there the beings will twinkle, i.e., open and close their eyes. The men, beasts, and birds will twinkle due to your residing there; but the Immortals will always remain with a steadfast gaze; they will not twinkle.” Thus granting him the boon, and addressing all the Munis the Bhagavatī, the Highest Deity, disappeared. When the Devī disappeared from their sight, the Munis then thought much and they took the body of the King Nimi to burn it duly. For the sake of getting a son from Nimi, the high-souled Munis performed Homa ceremony (oblations to the fire) and placing the piece of wood Arani on his body began to utter Mantrams and burned his body. When the woods were thus burned, a son, endowed with all auspicious signs, looking like a second Nimi, was born to them. As this son was born due to the burning of the Aranis, the boy was named Mithi, and as it came out of the body of Janaka, the boy was named Janaka. O King! As the King Nimi lost his body, i.e., became Videha through the curse of Vas’istha, all his descendants were known as Videha. Thus the son of Nimi was well known as the King Janaka. He built a beautiful city on the banks of the Ganges; the city became famous also by his name (Janakapuri). The King Janaka beautified this city with many forts, arcades, markets and many nice buildings and palaces; and his city was full of wealth and grains. O King! All the Kings of this line became famous by the name of Janaka and all were endowed with the Supreme knowledge and known as Videha. O King! I have now described to you the story of the King Nimi who got disembodiedness (Videhatva) out of the curse.

32-35. The King said:-- “O Bhagavān! You have described the cause why the King Nimi was cursed; my mind has grown very doubtful and restless on hearing it. The Risi Vas’istha was the son of Brahmā and the best of the Brāhmins; especially he was the royal priest; how was it, then, that he was cursed by the King! Why did not the King Nimi forgive him as he was the Guru and a Brāhmin? Why he became angry, when he performed such a great, auspicious sacrifice? He was born of the family of Iksāku and he knew well the truths of the religion; then how was it that he became subject to anger and cursed his own Guru Brāhmin.”

36-46. Vyāsa said:-- O King! It is very hard and rare for the persons not possessed of self-restraint to forgive; especially when one is fully capable, it is very rare to find one in the three worlds, who can forgive. He who has forsaken all attachments and has conquered hunger and sleep and is always engaged in the Yoga practices, even that ascetic Muni is not capable to conquer completely lust, anger and greed and Ahamkāra, etc., the passions raging in the mortal coil. None existed before in this whole world who conquered his passions! None exists now and none will be born ever-after. Hardly will be seen any in this earth, or the Heavens, or the Loka of Brahmā or in Vaikuntha, even in Kailāsa, that has conquered completely his passions! What can be said in regard to the ordinary mortals of this earth when the sons of Brahmā, the Maharsis, ascetics, Risis are all pierced by the Sāttva, Rājas, or Tāmo Gunas. Behold! The Kapila was the Knower of S’ankhyā and always engaged in his Yoga practices and he was a pure and holy soul; yet, by strange combinations of Fate, he became angry and burnt to ashes the sons of the King Sagara. O King! Out of Ahamkāra, these three worlds are created; therefore this world and Ahamkāra are related to each other as effect and cause; how then the Jīvas that are born of this Samsāra can extricate themselves from this Ahamkāra? Brahmā, Visnu and Mahes’a are also pierced by those three Gunas; different feelings are seen in their different bodies. Therefore it need hardly be said that the manifestation of the pure Sāttva Guna alone is not to be seen in any of the human beings; for the three Gunas reside in a mixed way in all persons. Sometimes the Sāttva preponderates; sometimes the Rājas and sometimes the Tāmas preponderates. Sometimes they reside together, the three balancing one other.

47-63. O King! Only that Eternal Highest Purusa is undecaying and untainted and can hardly be measured or seen by all the beings. That Highest Soul, the Highest of the High, is Nirguna (void of the three Gunas); and She who resides in all the beings and is hardly knowable by the small intellectual persons, that Highest S’akti, the Incarnate of Brahmā, is also Nirguna (void of attributes). Paramātmā (the Highest Soul) and the Highest Force are also One; their Forms are not different. When such a knowledge arises, then the Jīvas can be free from all sins and faults and blemishes. From that knowledge comes the liberation, this is sounded in the Vedānta S’āstra like Dindima S’abda (thousands of small drums). He, who comes to know That, is freed from the endless cycle of birth and death composed of the three Gunas; there is no doubt in this.

O King! Knowledge is of two kinds:-- The first is considered as coming from sound; this comes out of the knowledge of the meaning of the Vedas by the help of intellect. But this is full of fancies, agreements and doubts some of which are bad and some are good. The beings are led into errors by these discussions; errors cause destruction of intellect; and when the intellect is gone, the knowledge also goes away with it. Whereas the second kind of knowledge comes from intention or feeling within the depths of heart and brain and it is called Aparoksa Jñāna. This knowledge is very rare to the beings. When one comes in contact with a Sad-Guru (a good teacher), then one gets this Aparoksa Jñāna. From the sound knowledge, no successful results can issue; and, therefore it cannot give Aparoksa Jñāna. Hence great effort is to be made for getting this Aparoksa Jñāna. O King! As darkness cannot be destroyed merely by talking of light, without lighting any lamp, so the knowledge of sound merely cannot destroy the darkness of the inside. That Karma (action) is called True Karma which does not lead to bondage, and that Knowledge is the True Knowledge which leads to liberation. Other actions are only meant for one’s own selfish enjoyments and other knowledges are merely the skill in arts. Good behaviour, doing good to others, having no anger, forgiveness, patience, and contentment are the best brilliant fruits of True Knowledge. O King! Without knowledge, without asceticism, and without the Yoga practices, the lust and other passions can never be destroyed. The minds of the Jīvas are naturally restless and without control; all the beings are completely under the sway of their minds; thus they roam on the surface of the earth as good, middling and bad. Lust, anger, etc., orginate from this mind; and when mind is conquered, then those feelings can no more arise. O King! Therefore it was that Yayāti forgave when S’ukrāchārya did wrong before. The King Nimi could not forgive Vas’istha in the same way. Yayāti; the best of kings, though cursed by S’ukrāchārya, the son of Bhrigu, did not curse in return but he took upon himself the old age. O King! Some kings are naturally peaceful, whereas some other kings are wicked by their nature. Therefore, in this matter, whose fault is this, how can we ascertain? See! In ancient times the Haihayas, out of their greed of wealth, and being thus insensible destroyed completely, out of anger, the Brāhmin priests of the family of Bhrigu. What more than this that those Ksattriyas did not consider the sin Brahmahattyā; rather out of their dire anger, they cut to pieces the sons of those Brāhmanas, that were in embryos in their mother’s wombs.

Here ends the Fifteenth Chapter in the Sixth Book on the Nimi’s getting of another body and the beginning of the story of Haihayas, in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XVI
On the incidents preliminary
to the Haihaya and Bhārgava affairs

1-5. Janamejaya said:-- In whose family were born those Ksattriya Haihayas that killed in ancient times the Bhārgavas, disregardless of the sin incurred in killing a Brāhmin? O Grandsire! Never do the good persons become angry without a serious cause; therefore kindly state why they got angry. How was the enmity caused between them and the priests? As far as I can think, the cause is not so simple a one as led to this enmity between the Ksattriyas and the priests. Otherwise why then would they slay the offenseless Brāhmins, fit to be worshipped; and how was it that the Ksattriyas, though they were so very powerful, did not fear to commit a sin. O Muni! Can any Ksattriya Chief kill a Brāhmin, worthy of the highest respect, merely on a trifling cause! Describe to me, then, how this happened. A great doubt has thus arisen in my mind.

6. Sûta said:-- O Risis! Vyāsa, the son of Satyavatī, became very pleased when he was asked this question by Janamejaya, and, recollecting the whole course of events regarding the Haihayas, began to narrate it.

7-22. Vyāsa said:-- O son of Pariksit! I will now narrate that wonderful story of old that I know fully; now hear this very attentively. In ancient times there was a King named Kārtavīryārjuna of the family of Haihaya. He was of thousand hands, powerful, and always ready to observe religious duties. He was the incarnation of Hari, and the disciple of Maharsi Dattātreya and the worshipper of the Supreme Force (Ādyā S’akti). He was well known as a perfect adept in the Yoga practices and of a very charitable disposition. But this King was the client of the Brāhmins of the Bhārgava clan. He was always devoted to performing sacrifices, exceedingly religious, and always engaged in making gifts. So many a time did he perform the great sacrifices and gave a profuse quantity of wealth to the Bhārgavas. Due to the gifts and presents of Kārta Vīrya, the Bhārgava priests became possessed of many horses, and gems and jewels and so became wealthy and prosperous on the surface of this earth. O King! When Kārtavīryārjuna, the best of Kings, left the mortal coil and got up to Heavens, his descendants became entirely void of any wealth by the indomitable influence of Time. Now, on a certain occasion, the Haihayas had to perform certain actions which necessitated a vast sum of money; they came to the Bhārgavas and humbly prayed for a very large amount of wealth. But the Brāhmins, out of their greed of money, replied they had no money and thus they did not give any money whatsoever. Rather the Bhārgavas thought that the Haihayas would perforce take their wealth, and, fearing thus, some of them buried all their valuables underneath the ground; and others gave as charities to the Brāhmanas. The greedy Bhārgavas, bewildered with fear, thus transferred all their properties elsewhere, quitted their homes and fled away to mountains and other places. The greedy Brāhmins did not give any wealth to their Yajamānas (their clients) though they saw them very much distressed; but they fled away out of fear to mountains and fastnesses where they found shelter. At last the Haihayas, the best of the Ksattriyas, became very sorry till, at last, for the sake of their good actions, they went to the Bhārgavas’ houses for the sake of money and found they had quitted their homes and fled away; their homes were all vacant. Then they began to dig underneath their houses for money and some got the money thus. Then the Ksattriyas began to labour hard and got hordes of money from underneath the ground. Next they raided upon other Brāhmanas’ houses and dug and excavated and searched for more money. The Brāhmins were helpless and, crying, all took their refuge, out of fear, under the Bhārgavas.

23-42. The Ksattriyas made an exhaustive search of the Brāhmanas’ houses and got lots of money. They then charged the Brāhmanas as having had spoken falsehood and they became very angry, and killed the Brāhmanas with arrows who took their refuge. O King! The Haihayas were so very angry at that time that they went wherever the Bhārgavas took their shelter and cut asunder the foetus in the wombs of their Bhārgavas’ wives and thus they roamed all over on the surface of the earth. Wherever they saw any Bhārgava, be he a minor, or a youth or a old man, at once they killed him with sharp arrows, disregarding the sin Brahmahattyā. When the Bhārgavas were thus all killed, then they caught hold of their wives that were pregnant and destroyed their wombs. When the vicious Ksattriyas thus destroyed the lives in their wombs, the helpless women began to cry like the awe-stricken ewe. Then the other Munis, the inhabitants of the sacred places of pilgrimages, seeing the Haihaya Ksattriyas inflamed with anger, said:-- “O Ksattriyas! Quit your terrible anger towards the Brāhmins. Being the best of the Ksattriyas, you are killing the foetus in the wombs of the pregnant Brāhmana ladies! You are doing, no doubt, a very vicious and unjustifiable act! You should know that an act, very bad or very good, bears fruit in this life; therefore those that seek their welfare should entirely omit this exceedingly hateful and vicious act.” Then the exceedingly angry Haihayas told the merciful ascetics:-- You all are saints; therefore you do not know the real import of what are called vicious acts. Those Bhārgavas, thoroughly dexterous in cunning pursuits, deceived our largehearted forefathers and stole away all their gold and jewels, as thieves do with a passerby on a road. These Bhārgavas are cheats, vain persons and their persuasions are like herons. A great act had to be done by us and we wanted money at 25 per cent interest with all the becoming humility; yet they did not give us the money; rather seeing on their face their clients distressed and sorrowful they spoke that they had no money, no money and then they remained silent. True, they got all their money from Kārtavīrya; but it may be questioned why they stored it? Why did not they perform sacrifices with that? Why did not they give sufficient money to the other priests (Yāyakas) that did the sacrifices. Never should any Brāhmin hoard his money; he should give that in charity and enjoy at his pleasure. O Twice-born! In amassing wealth, there exist three fears:-- Fear from the thieves and robbers, fear from the King, fear from dreadful fire accidents, and especially great terrible fear from the cheats. This is the nature of wealth; it leaves its preserver. See, moreover, when a hoarder of money dies, he certainly has to quit it. If a wealthy man, before dying, performs sacrifices and other good pious acts by his earned money, then he gets certainly good states in future; otherwise, he quits his wealth, to no purpose and earns a bad state in his future life; there is no doubt in this. We humbly wanted to pay a quarter interest and asked money for the performance of a great act; yet they, the greedy ones, were doubtful about our promise; and though our priests, they did not give us the money. O Maharsis! Gift, enjoyment and destruction, these are the three courses which any wealth has to pass through; those persons that have done good deeds, enjoy their wealth and give as charities and thus they make a good and real use of their money; and of those that are vicious, their wealth goes away in ruin and to no purpose. He who does not enjoy nor give in charities but is only clever in hoarding and who is a miser, the Kings punish him by all means, that man who cheats himself and who suffers only pains and miseries. For that reason, we are now ready to kill those Brāhmins, the vilest of men, the cheats, though they are our Gurus. O Maharsis! You are great persons; therefore you do not be angry after you have come to know all these.

43-51. Vyāsa said:-- Thus consoling the Munis, with reasonable words, the Haihayas began to roam about, in search of the wives of the Bhārgavas. The Bhārgava wives were very much distressed with fear and became very lean and thin. They fled away to the Himālayān Mountain weeping, and crying, and trembling with fear. Thus the Bhārgavas were being killed by those vicious greedy Haihayas, infuriated with anger, and as they liked. O King! This greed is the greatest enemy of a man, residing in his own body; this greed is the root of all evils, of all sins. Life is in danger due to this covetousness. It is due to this greed that quarrels ensue amongst the several castes, the Brāhmins, etc., and that the human beings are very much troubled with thirst after worldly enjoyments. This greed makes a man forsake all his religious rites and long existing customs and observances of his family; and it is due to this avarice of gold that men kill their fathers, mothers, brothers, friends, Gurus, sons, acquaintances, sisters, and sisters-in-law and others. Really when a man is bent on avarice, nothing heinous remains to him that cannot be done by him. This greed is a more powerful enemy than anger, lust and egoism. O King! Men abandon their lives for their greed; what more can be said than this? So one should be always alert on this. O King! Your forefathers, the Pāndavas and Kauravas, were all religious and they followed the path of virtue and goodness. Yet they all were ruined simply for this greed. See! The dreadful fight and separation amongst the relatives took place where there were the high-souled persons like Bhīsma, Drona, Kripāchārya, Karna, Vahlika, Bhīmasena, Yudhisthira, Arjuna, and Kes’ava, only through the avaricious feelings. In this battle Bhīsma, Drona and the sons of Pāndavas were all slain; the brothers and fathers were all slain in battle. Thus what improper acts and mischiefs can there be that cannot be committed when the human minds are overpowered by this greed? O King! The vicious Haihayas slew the Bhārgavas all through this avarice.

Here ends the Sixteenth Chapter in the Sixth Book on the incidents preliminary to the Haihaya and Bhārgava affairs in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XVII
On the continuance of the family of Bhrigu

1-3. Janamejaya said:-- “Munis! How did the Bhārgava wives cross this endless sea of troubles and how was the family of Bhrigu re-established on the surface of this earth? And what did the greedy Haihayas, the vilest of the Ksattriyas, do after they killed the Bhārgavas? Describe all these in detail and satisfy my curiosity. O Thou, Ocean of austerities! I am not satisfied with the drink of your nectar like words, very holy and leading to happiness in this world and to good merits in the next.”

4-28. Vyāsa said:-- O King! I will now narrate to you the sin destroying virtuous story how the Bhārgava wives crossed their great hardships and the ocean of troubles, very difficult to cross. The Bhārgava wives, when they were very much harassed by the Haihayas, went to the Himālayās, overwhelmed with terror and disappointment. There on that mountain they erected an earthen image of S’rī Gaurī Devī by the banks of the Ganges and worshipped Her and, firmly resolved to die, began to fast. The Devī Jagadambikā appeared to those religious women in their dreams and said:-- “A son will be born of My essence to one of you from one of her thighs; that son will redress all your wants.” Thus speaking, the Devī Bhagavatī disappeared. Those women when they woke up were very glad; one of them that appeared very clever, becoming very much anxious out of the fear of the Ksattriyas; preserved the foetus in one of her thighs for the propagation of the family. Her body became luminous; she then fled, overwhelmed with terror. The Ksattriyas, seeing that Brāhmanī, came quickly upon her and said:-- “See! This pregnant Bhārgava wife is flying away hastily; seize her and take away her life.” Thus saying, all of them raised their axes, and pursued her. Then that woman seeing them coming, wept out of fear. She cried, out of terror, for the preservation of the child in her womb; and the child seeing her mother helpless and distressed, trembling with fear and with tears in her eyes having no one to protect her and awfully oppressed by the Ksattriyas as if a pregnant deer has been attacked by a lion and is crying about, angrily burst out of the thigh of his mother, and quickly came out like a second Sun. That good looking boy took away the power of sight of those Ksattriyas by his brilliant lustrous light; no sooner the Haihayas saw that boy than they got blind. Like those that are born blind; they then began to roam in the caves of mountains and thought within themselves, what an evil turn of Fate had overtaken them! They thought thus:-- “Oh! The mere sight of that boy has turned us blind; what a great wonder is this! Certainly this is due to the influence of the Brāhminī wife; this is, no doubt, the great effect of her virtue of chastity. We have greatly oppressed the Bhārgava women. They have become very sorry and distressed; now we cannot tell what more evils do these women, of true resolve, inflict on us!” Thus pondering, those Ksattriyas deprived of their eyes, helpless, and their minds bewildered, took refuge of those Brāhmin ladies. The ladies, seeing them again come, were the more terrified; but those Ksattriyas bowed down before them with folded hands for the restoration of their sights and said:-- “O Mother! We are your servants. Be gracious unto us. O Auspicious Ones! We are vicious Ksattriyas; O Mothers! What an amount of offence we have committed to you. O Beautiful Ones! We have become blind, no sooner we have seen you. O Angry Ones! No more we can see your lotus-like faces, as if we are born blind; O Mother! The spirit of your asceticism is so very wonderful! We are sinners; therefore by no means we can get our sight; therefore we have taken refuge unto you all; better give us back our eyesight and preserve our honour. O Mother! Blindness is more dreadful than death; therefore do you show your mercy on us. Be pleased unto us and restore our eyesights and make us your slaves; no sooner we get back our sights, we will cease from these vicious acts and go to our homes. In future, we will never commit such heinous acts; from today we all become servants of the Bhārgavas and we will serve them. Forgive all our sins that we committed unconsciously; we promise that, in future, there will no more be any enmity between the Bhārgavas and Ksattriyas. O good-looking Ones! You pass your days happily with your sons; we ever bow down before you. O Auspicious Ones! Be graciously pleased unto us; no more we will cherish any inimical feelings towards you.”

29-44. Vyāsa said:-- O King! The Bhārgava lady heard their words and was thunderstruck and seeing those Ksattriyas bowing down before her, blind and distressed, consoled them and said, “O Ksattriyas! I have not taken away your sights nor am I displeased in any way with you. Now hear what is the real cause. This child of Bhārgava, born of my thigh, is exceedingly angry towards you and has therefore made your eyesight still and to no purpose. For the greed of wealth, you have slain the close relatives of this boy, those that were quite innocent and virtuous ascetics and you have slain their children that were in their mothers’ wombs; this boy has come to know all those things. O children! When you were slaying the children of the Bhārgavas in their mothers’ wombs, I then bore within my thighs this child for one hundred years. This son of mine though as yet in the womb, has mastered all the Vedas within so very short a time for the propagation of the Bhārgava clan. Now this Bhārgava son is infuriated with anger for your slaying his father and is now ready to kill you all. My son! Whose divine effulgence has destroyed your eyesights, is born of grace of the Highest Goddess, the Bhagavatī Bhuvanes’varī; therefore do not consider this boy as an ordinary being. Now bow down with humility before this my son Aurvya (born from the thighs); this son may be pleased by your bowing down and may restore you your eyesights.

Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing thus the words of the Brāhmin lady, the Haihayas began to praise the boy with hymns. With great humility, they bowed down to the best of the Munis, born of the thighs. The Risi Aurvya, then, became pleased and spoke thus to the Haihayas who were deprived of their eyesights:-- “Better go back to your own homes. O Kings! And read these following words derived from my this story. Whatever is inevitable and created by the hands of gods must come to pass. Knowing this, no one ought to be sorrowful on any such matters. Let you all regain your eyesights as before and forego your anger and go to your own homes respectively at your own will. Let the Risis, too, get peace and happiness as before.” When the Maharsi Aurvya ordered thus, the Haihayas got back their eyesights and went at their leisure to their own homes; on the other hand the Brāhmin lady went to her own hermitage, with her Divine-spirited child and began to nourish him. O King! Thus I have described to you the story of the killing of the Bhārgavas and how the Ksattriyas, actuated by greed, did so very vicious acts.

45-48. Janamejaya said:-- “O Ascetic! Hearing this exceedingly heart-rending act of the Ksattriyas, I come to know, that greed is the sole cause of it and both the parties had suffered so much, simply out of this insatiable greed. O King of Munis! I want to ask you one more question in regard to this point. How the sons of the Kings came to be known Haihayas in this world? Amongst the Ksattriyas, some are called Yādavas for they ware descended from the family of Yadu; some were known as Bhārata, for they were descended from Bhārata. But was some king named Haihaya born before in their family or were they known as such on account of other actions? I desire to hear of it. Kindly describe this to me and oblige.”

49-56. Vyāsa said:-- O King! I am describing in detail to you of the origin of the Haihayas. Hear. The sins are destroyed and the merits accrue on hearing this story. O King! Once on a time Revanta, the son of the Sun, very beautiful and of boundless lustre, was going to Visnu in Vaikuntha, mounted on the beautiful Uchchais’rava, the jewel of the horses. When he was going on horseback with a desire to see the God Visnu, the Goddess Laksmī saw that child of the Sun. The Goddess Laksmī, born out of the churning of the ocean, on looking at the beautiful appearance of her brother Horse, also born out of the churning of the ocean, became very much astonished and steadily gazed on him. The Bhagavān Visnu, capable to show both favour and disfavour, saw the beautiful Revanta, of good figure, coming on horseback; and lovingly asked Laksmī:-- “O Beautiful One! Who is coming here on horseback, as it were, enchanting to the three worlds!” At that time, the Goddess Laksmī was accidentally looking intently on the horse; so she did not reply, though repeatedly asked by the Bhagavān.

57-68. The Laksmī Devī, always restless, was very much intent on the horse and was enchanted and She was looking steadily with great affection on the horse. Seeing this, the Bhagavān became angry and said:-- “O Beautiful-eyed One! What you are looking at so intently? Are you so much enchanted with the sight of the horse that you are not speaking to me a single word, though I am repeatedly asking you so often! You lovingly dwell on all the objects; hence your name is Ramā; your mind is also very restless, therefore you would be known as Chanchalā Devī (the restless Devī). O Auspicious One! You are restless like ordinary women; you can never stay steadily for a certain time at any one place. While sitting before Me, you are enchanted with the sight of a horse; then you be born as a mare in that world of men, full of dreadful troubles, on the surface of the earth. The Goddess Laksmī became very much affrightened at the sudden curse given by Hari, a matter as it were ordained by the Devas, and began to cry aloud, shuddering with pain and sorrows. Laksmī Devī, then of sweet smiles, frightened, bowed down with great humility to her own lord Nārāyana and said thus:-- O Deva of the Devas! O Govinda! You are the Lord of this world and the Ocean of mercy. O Kes’ava! Why have you inflicted on me so dreadful a curse for such a minor fault of mine! O Lord! I never saw you before so very angry; Alas! Where has now gone that affection, so natural and undying, that you showed towards me! O Lord! It is not proper to hurl a thunderbolt on one’s own relations; but it is advisable to cast it on the enemies. I am always fit for receiving boons from you. Why have you made me now an object, fit for curse. O Govinda! I will quit this life in Your presence. I will never be able to live, separated from You. O Lord! Be graciously pleased and say when shall I be free from this dreadful curse and regain Your happy companion?

69. The Bhagavān said:-- “O Devī! When you will get a son in the world like me, you will no doubt come again to be my companion.”

Here ends the Seventeenth Chapter on the continuance of the family of Bhrigu in the Sixth Book in the Mahāpurānam, S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XVIII
On the origin of the Haihaya Dynasty

1-5. Janamejaya said:-- How did the Goddess Laksmī, the daughter of the ocean, come to be born as a mare, when cursed by the Bhagavān in His moment of anger, and what did Revanta do at that time? In what country was the Devī born as a mare and how did She pass Her time alone like one whose husband had gone abroad. O Muni! How long and in what forest unfrequented by persons did she pass her time, thus deprived of the companion of her husband and what did she do at that time? When was she reconciled with her husband Vāsudeva? and how did she get a son, when she lived in a state of separation from her husband. O best of Āryas! I am very curious to hear this excellent story. So describe this in full details to me.

6. Sûta said:-- O Risis! Thus questioned by Janamejaya, the Dvaipāyan Muni began to recite the story in its full details.

7-24. Vyāsa said:--O King! I will now describe to you the pleasing story of the Purānas in a clear distinct language; hear. Revanta, the son of the Sun, became terrified to see Vāsudeva, the Deva of the Devas cursing the Laksmī Devī and, after bowing down to Janārdan, the Lord of the world, went off. Seeing the anger of Visnu, the Lord of the world, he went quickly to his father and informed him of the curse delivered by Nārāyana to the Goddess Laksmī. And the Laksmī Devī, the lotus-eyed, thus cursed, got the permission of Nārāyana and with a grieved heart bowed down to him and came down to the world of mortals. She took the form of a mare and went to the spot where the wife of the Sun (named Chchāyā) practised her asceticism in ancient times. The place was the confluence of the river Kālindi and the Tamasā, and decorated with lovely forests and trees situated north of the mountain named Suparnāksa, yielding all desires. There she meditated with her whole heart the auspicious Mahādeva S’ankara, the Giver of all desires, thus:-- That Mahādeva is holding the Tris’ûla (the trident) on his arms; His forehead is adorned with beautiful cooling semi-Moon; He has five faces, each face having three eyes; His throat is coloured blue; He has ten arms; His body is white like camphor; He wears a tiger’s skin; His upper garment is of elephant’s skin; and snakes are his holy thread; He is holding the one-half of the body of Gaurī and his neck is adorned with garlands of human skulls. The Goddess Laksmī, the daughter of the ocean, assuming the form of a mare, thus practised severe asceticism in that place of pilgrimage. O King! With a feeling of intense dispassion (Vairāgyam) towards the worldly things, She spent the divine one thousand years in the meditation of Mahādeva, the God of the Gods. After that period, the Highest Lord Mahādeva, mounting on His bull, came there with His consort Pārvatī and appeared before the Laksmī Devī, perceptible by his eyes. Appearing thus with His host of His own persons, He then spoke to Laksmī, dear to Hari, now practising ascetism in the form of a mare, “O Auspicious One! You are the Mother of this whole Universe and your Husband is the Creator of these worlds and is capable to give all desires. Why are You, then, practising asceticism, when He is present? What is the cause of this? O Devī! Why are You praising hymns to me, instead of to Vāsudeva S’rī Hari, Who is capable to yield enjoyments and final liberation, and Who is the Preserver and the Lord of this world. O Devī! Work should be done according to the authority of the Vedas; it is stated in the Vedas that the husband is the lord of a woman; therefore it is never advisable to fix one’s mind entirely on another person. The eternal Dharma of women is to serve their husbands; whether the husband be a saint or a sinner, the woman, desirous of her welfare, should serve her husband in every way. O Daughter of the Ocean! Your husband Nārāyana is fit to be served by all and He is capable to yield all desires. Why are you then worshipping Me, and leaving the Lord of the Goloka, the Deva of the Devas.”

25-32. Laksmī said:-- O Deva of the Devas! O Seat of Auspiciousness! I know that You are soon pleased with Your servant. My husband has cursed me. O Ocean of mercy! Kindly save me from this curse. O S’ambhu! When I informed my husband of my mental agonies, graciously and mercifully He then pointed out how I might be freed of this curse thus:-- “O Kamale! When Your son will be born, then You will be freed of this curse and will, no doubt, come back and live in this Heaven of Vaikuntha.” Thus spoken, I have come in this hermitage to make tapas and to worship Thee, knowing that Thou art the Bhagavān, the Lord of Bhavanī, the Lord of all and the Giver of all desires. O Lord of the Devas! How can I get a son without the intercourse of My husband? Though I am guiltless, my husband has forsaken me and is living in Vaikuntha. O Mahes’vara! Thou art doing good to all persons; and if Thou art pleased with me, then grant me a boon. O Lord! I know full well that there is no distinction between Him and Thee. O Lord of Girījā! This truth I have come to learn from my husband. O Hara! You are the same thing that He is and what is He is the same as You; there is not the least doubt in this. O Thou, full of auspiciousness! Recognising the Sameness without any distinction between Him and Thee, I am meditating on Thee. Had it been otherwise, then I would certainly have been guilty when I take Thy refuge and meditate on Thee.

33-36. S’ankara said:-- “O Devī, the daughter of the Ocean! Tell truly before me how you have been able to realise the identity between Him and Me. The Devas, Munis and the Maharsis, versed in the Vedas, get their understandings baffled by wrong argumentations and never realise the identity without any difference between us. Almost everywhere you will perceive that many of my devotees blame me. Specially in this Kālī Yuga due to the influence of Time, this happens to a very great extent in many cases. O Auspicious One! Let that go! How have you come to know this matter, which is difficult even for the liberal-minded persons to comprehend. Know that this perception of the identity between me and Hari is very rare.”

37-38. Vyāsa said:-- O King! When Mahādeva asked thus with great pleasure, the Devī Kamalā, the darling of Hari, gladly replied the essence of the matter to Mahādeva.

39-43. Laksmī said:-- “O Deva of the Devas! One day Bhagavān Visnu, seated in the Padmāsana posture, was immersed in deep meditation. I was very much astonished at this. When His meditation was over and when He was in a pleasant mood, I asked Him with great humility, O Deva of the Devas! I know that You are the Lord of the world and Master of this whole Universe; when Brahmā and the other Devas were united and churned the great ocean, I came out of the waters and looked all around to know who is the superior one whom I can select as my husband and then, thinking You as the superior to all the Devas, I accepted You as my husband. Now whose meditation You are doing again? A great doubt has thus occurred in my mind. O Lord! You are my most Beloved; now disclose to me your innermost desire and thought.”

44-49. Visnu said:-- “O Beloved! Hear now, whom I am meditating. I am meditating in the lotus of My heart that Mahādeva Mahes’vara, the Highest of all the Devas. Mahādeva, the Deva of the Devas, of indomitable prowess, sometimes meditates on Me and sometimes I meditate on the Lord of the Deva, S’ankara, the Destroyer of Tripurā. I am dear to S’iva as his life is dear to him and S’ankara is similarly dear to me. The hearts of us both are attached to each other in the most secret way possible; therefore there is not the least difference betwixt us both. O large-eyed One! Those men who being my devotees hate S’ankara, certainly go to hell. I speak this very truly unto you.” O Mahes’vara! When I asked him this question when he was all alone, that Deva of the Devas, the Highest Visnu thus said to me. Therefore I am meditating on You, knowing that You are His beloved. O Mahes’a! Now find out means by which I can mix with My husband.

50-59. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Mahādeva, skilled in speech, hearing thus the words of Laksmī, consoled Her with sweet words and said:-- “O Beautiful! Be peaceful; I am pleased with Your tapasyā; soon You will come in contact with Your husband. There is not the least doubt in this. When I will send the Bhagavān, the Lord of the world, He will come before you in the shape of a horse, to satisfy your desires. I will send the Madhusûdana, the Deva of the Devas, in such a manner, as he will come in the form of a horse, passionately attached to you. O One of good eye brows! Thus you will get a son equivalent to Nārāyana; and the son will be the King on this earth and will be undoubtedly worshipped by all. O fortunate One! After you get your son, you will go to Vaikuntha with Nārāyana and will reside there as His Beloved. Your son will be famed by the name of Ekavīra; and from him will propagate the Haihaya dynasty on the earth. O Kamale! You were blind by prosperity, and, becoming passionate, you forgot the Devī Parames’varī, residing in your heart. Therefore you have experienced such a result. Therefore, to expiate that sin, take Her refuge by all means. O Devī! If your heart remained attached to the Highest Devī the blissful Bhagavatī, your heart would never have got attached to the Uchchais’ravā horse. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Thus granting boons to Laksmī Devī, He with his consort Umā vanished away in her presence.

60-62. Kamalā Devī, lovely in all respects, whose toe nails are always rubbed by the gems on the coronets of the Devas, began to meditate on the lotus-feet of Ambikā and in expectation of his beloved Hari, in the shape of a horse, praised and chanted hymns frequently to the Highest Goddess, in words choked with feelings of intense love.

Here ends the Eighteenth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the origin of the Haihaya Dynasty in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XIX
On the origin of Haihayas from a mare

1-3. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Thus granting the boon to the Goddess Laksmī, S’ambhu quickly returned to the lovely Kailās’a, adorned with Apsarās (celestial nymphs) and frequented and served by the Gods. He then despatched his expert attendant Chitrarûpa to Vaikuntha to bring the purpose of Laksmī to a successful issue. He said to him thus:-- “O Chitrarûpa! Go to Hari and speak to him on my behalf that He would go and remove the sorrows of His distressed and bereaved wife and thus make Her comfortable.”

4-9. Thus ordered, Chitrarûpa started immediately and reached at once Vaikuntha, the highest place, covered all over by the Vaisnavas. The place was diversified with lots of various trees, with hundreds of lovely lakes, and echoed with sweet lovely sounds of swans, Kārandavas, peacocks, parrots, cuckoos and various other birds and adorned with beautiful places, decked with flags and banners. It was filled with charming dancings, music and other artistic things. There were the lovely Bakula, As’oka, Tilaka, Champaka and other trees; and the beautiful tree Mandāra looked beautiful and shed all around the sweet fragrance of its sweet flowers for a long distance. Thus seeing the lovely nice palace of Visnu and the two doorkeepers Jaya and Vijaya standing with canes in their hands, Chitraratha bowed down to them and said:-- Well! You go quickly and inform the Supreme Soul Hari that a messenger has come under the orders of the Bhagavān S’ûlapānī and is now waiting at His doors.

10-18. Hearing his words, the intelligent Jaya went to Hari and, with folded hands, said:-- “O Thou Ocean of Mercy! O Kes’ava! O Lord of Ramā! O Deva of the Devas! A messenger has come from the Lord of Bhavānī and is waiting at the doors. I do not not know on what important business he has come. Please order whether I will bring him before You or not. On hearing the Jaya’s words, Hari, aware of the inner feelings, knew at once the cause and said:-- O Jaya! Bring before me the messenger come from Rudra. Thus hearing, Jaya called the S’iva’s servant, of a graceful form, and brought him to the presence of Janārdana. Chitrarûpa, of variegated appearance, prostrated himself flat before Him in the form of a stick and stood up and remained with folded hands. The Bhagavān Nārāyana, Whose carrier is Garuda, saw that servant of S’iva, of variegated appearance and full of all humility, and became very much astonished. The Lord of Kamalā then smiled and asked Chitrarûpa:-- “O Pure One! Is it all well with Mahādeva, the Lord of the Devas and his other families and attendants? On what business has He sent you here? What does He want me to do? Or tell me if I have to do any other business of the gods.”

19-34. The messenger said:-- “O Thou, the Knower of all that is within one’s heart! There is nothing in this world hidden from Your knowledge; when is that which I will say unknown to you! O Thou, the Knower of present, past and future! I am now saying to you what S’ambhu has told me to inform You. He has said:-- O Lord! The Goddess Laksmī is Your dear consort. She, the daughter of the Ocean, and the Bestower of all success, though an object fit to be meditated by Yaksas, Kinnaras, Naras and Immortals, is now undergoing severe penance at the confluence of Kalindī (the Jumnā, the daughter of Kalinda) and the Tamasā. What is there in the three worlds that can be happy without that Mother of the worlds and the Giver of all desires? O Lotus-eyed One! What pleasure do You feel in abandoning Her? O All-pervading One! Even he who has no riches or who is very weak maintains his wife; then why have You, being the Lord of the worlds, forsaken your wife, without any offence, Who is worshipped by the whole universe. O Lord of the world! What advice shall I give to You? He whose wife suffers in the world, is blamed by his enemies. O Omnipresent One! Fie on his such a life! O Lord of the worlds! Your enemies’ desires are satisfied when they see Her very miserable. They are laughing and mocking and saying:-- O Devī, Kes’ava has now forsaken you; you can spend happily your time with us now. Therefore, O Lord of the Devas! Bring that Lady back unto your palace and place Her unto your lap, Who is of good demeanour, beautiful, par excellence and endowed with all auspicious signs. O Deva! Accept, please, your sweet-smiling wife and be happy. Though I am at present not in bereavement of my dear wife, yet when I remember my former state of bereavement, I feel very much trouble. O Lotus-eyed One! When Satī Devī, my beloved Wife, quitted Her life, in Daksa’s house, I felt unbearable pain, O Kes’ava! Let no other body in this world suffer such pain, I now remember only the suffering and mental agonies that I felt on Her bereavement; I do not give it out to others. After a long time, practising severe Tapasyā (asceticism) I got Her back in the form of Girijā, who felt herself burnt up as it were by the anger She felt on account of censure cast on Me in the Daksa’s house and thus quitted Her life. O Murāri! What happiness you have felt in forsaking your dear wife and in remaining thus alone for one thousand years. Console your fortunate young wife with good teeth and bring her back to your place. O Bhagavān! Lastly, the Lord Bhavānī, the Originatrix of these worlds, told me to speak thus to you:-- O Destroyer of Kamsa! Let nobody remain even, for a moment, without Laksmī, the Highest Goddess. O Long-lived One! You better assume the form of a horse and go and worship her. Then have a child of yours in the womb of your sweet-smiling wife and bring her back to your house.”

35-42. Vyāsa said:-- O Ornament of Bhārata’s race! Hearing thus the words of Chitrarûpa, Bhagavān Hari told that he would do what S’ankara had told him to do and thus sent the messenger back to S’ankara. The messenger departing, Hari assumed the form of a beautiful horse and immediately left Vaikuntha with a passionate intent for the place where Laksmī was staying in the form of a mare and practising her austerities. Coming there, he saw that the Devī Bimalā was staying in the form of a mare. The mare, too, seeing the horse form of her husband Govinda, recognised him and, chaste as she was, remained there with astonishment and tears in her eyes. Then those two copulated on the famous confluence. The wife of Hari, in the shape of a mare, became pregnant and, in due time, gave birth to a beautiful well qualified child. The Bhagavān then graciously smiled on her and spoke in words suited to the time, “O Dear! Now quit this mare form and assume your former appearance. O Lovely-eyed One! Let both of us assume our own forms and go to Vaikuntha; and let your child remain in this place.”

43-48. Laksmī said:-- “O Lord! How can I go leaving here this child, born of my womb. It is very difficult to quit the attachments for one’s own child. Know this, O Lord! O High-souled One! This child is young and of small body; therefore it is quite incapable to protect itself. If I forsake it on the bank of this river, it will be an orphan, what will happen to it then? O Lotus-eyed One! My mind is now in full attachment towards it. How can I quit this helpless child and go?” When Laksmī and Nārāyana resumed their divine bodies and mounted on the excellent Vimānas, the Devas began to praise them with hymns. When Nārāyana expressed his desire to go, Kamalā said:-- “O Lord! You better take this child; I am unable to forsake it. O Lord! O Slayer of Madhu! This child is dearer to me than my life; see its body resembles exactly like you. Therefore we would take this child with us to Vaikuntha.”

49-54. Hari spoke:-- “O Dear! You need not be sorry; let this child remain here happily; I have arranged for its preservation and safety. O Beautiful One! There is a great act to do in this world. That will be executed by your child. For this reason I am leaving it here. I am now describing to you the above story. The famous King Yayāti had a son named Turvasu; his father kept his name as Hari Varmā; he is known by this name. That king is now practising asceticism for getting a son for one hundred years in a place of pilgrimage. O Laksmī! I have begot this son for him. I will go there and send the King here. O Beautiful-faced One! I will give this son to that King, desirous of an issue. He will take this son and go back to his house.”

55. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Thus consoling his beloved, whose abode is in the Lotus and placing the child there in that position, He mounted on an excellent car with Laksmī and went to Vaikuntha.

Here ends the Nineteenth Chapter in the Sixth Book on the origin of Haihayas from a mare in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XX
On the son born of mare by Hari

1-2. Janamejaya said:-- “O Bhagavān! A great doubt has arisen in my mind on this subject. Who was it that took away that son, when both Laksmī and Nārāyana left it, in that forlorn state, in a forest without any person there to look after?”

3-11. Vyāsa said:-- O King! No sooner Laksmī and Nārāyana departed from that place, one Vidyādhara, named Champaka, mounting on a beautiful celestial car came there at his free will, sporting with a woman named Madanālasā. There they saw that one lovely child, exquisitely beautiful like a Deva’s son, was playing alone as it liked. They then, quickly descended from their chariot and picked it up. Vidyādhara became very glad as a beggar becomes glad, when he gets a hoard of jewels. On taking that newly born beautiful child like a Cupid, Champaka gave it to the Devī Madanālasā. Madanālasā took it and became very much astonished; and her hairs stood at their ends. She clasped it to her bosom and kissed it frequently. O Bhārata! Taking that child on her lap as if her own child, Madanālasā embraced it and kissed it and got the highest happiness. Then both of them took that child and mounted on the car. The lean Madanālasā then laughingly queried:-- “O Lord! Whose child is this? Who has left it in this forest? It seems to me Mahā Deva, desirous to give me a son, has given it unto me.”

12-18. Champaka said:-- I will just now go and ask the all-knowing Indra whose child is this, whether it is of a Deva, Dānava or Gandharva. If he orders, I will purify this child found thus in this forest by the Veda Mantrams and then accept it as my own. It is not advisable to do a thing suddenly without knowing all the details. Thus saying to his wife Madanālasā, Champaka went with a gladdened heart hurriedly to the city of Indra with that child in his arms. Champaka gladly bowed down at the feet of Indra and gave him all the information he knew about the child and stood at one side with folded hands and spoke, “O Lord of the Devas! I have got this child, beautiful as Cupid, in the sacred place of pilgrimage at the confluence of the Jumnā and the Tamasā. O Lord of S’achī! Whose child is this? and why did they forsake it there? If you kindly permit, I will take this child as my own son. This child is very beautiful and liked very much by my wife; it is also the rule laid down in the S’āstras that one can accept any child as the Kritrima son. Therefore it is my earnest desire that I purify this child by the Veda Mantrams and take it legally as my own son.”

19-24. Indra said:-- O Highly Fortunate One! Bhagavān Vāsudeva, assuming the form of a horse, has produced this child out of the womb of Kamalā in the form of a mare. He intends to give over the child, capable to destroy enemies to Turvasu, the son of Yayāti, and thus will get a great purpose achieved by the child. That King, very religious, will be sent by Hari today and he will come for the child in that beautiful sacred place of pilgrimage. You better go back as early as possible and keep the child there as it was before till that king comes to that spot at the instance of the Devadeva Visnu. Do not waste a minute more. The King will be very sorry if he does not find the child there. Therefore O Champaka! Quit the attachment that you have for this child. You should know that this child will be famous in this earth as Ekavīra (only one hero).

25-30. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Thus hearing the Indra’s words, Champaka took the child and went back immediately to the spot whence he picked it up and keeping the child there as it laid, mounted on his car and went to his abode. At that instant, the husband of Laksmī, the Lord of the three worlds, went to the King, mounted on His car, beaming with effulgent rays. When the Bhagavān was descending from His aerial car, the King Turvasu was very glad to see Him and bowed down and laid himself prostrate on the ground. The Bhagavān, then, comforted the King, his own devotee, and said, “Get up, my child! Do away with your mental distress.” The King also eagerly and full of devotion, began to utter verses in praise of the Bhagavān. O Lord of Ramā! You are the presiding Deity of the Devas; Lord of the whole worlds, Ocean of Mercy and Giver of advice to all men. O Lord! Your sight is very rare even to the Yogis; being myself of a very slow dull intellect; I have been fortunate enough to see you. O Lord! This shews Your mercy.

31-54. Vyāsa said:-- O Bhagavān! O Infinite One! Those who are free from any desires and free from any attachment to worldly things, they alone are entitled to see Thee. O Deva of the Devas! I am bound in thousand and one desires. I am quite unfit to see Thee. There is no doubt in this. When Turvasu, the best of the kings, praised thus, Bhagavān Visnu became pleased and began to speak in the following pleasant words:-- “O King! I am pleased with your asceticism; now ask your desired boon; I will grant it immediately.” The King bowed down again to the feet of Visnu and said:-- “O Murāri! For the sake of a son, I have practised this tapasyā; grant me a son like my Self.” Nārāyana, the First-born of the Devas, hearing this King’s request spoke to him in infallible words:-- “O son of Yayāti! Go to the confluence of the Yamunā and Tamasā. For you I have kept there today a son as you like and of indomitable prowess. O King! That child is begotten by me in the womb of Laksmī.” The King became very glad to hear the sweet pure words of the Bhagavān. Thus granting him the boon, Visnu went with Ramā to Vaikuntha. The King Turvasu, the son of Yayāti, hearing these words, became exceedingly gladdened in his heart and mounting on a chariot, whose speed cannot be checked, went to the spot where lay the child. The king, of extraordinary genius, went there and saw that the exceedingly beautiful child, catching hold of his toe by one of his soft hands was sucking it by his mouth and was playing on the ground. The child was born of Nārāyana out of the womb of Kamalā. Therefore it resembled like Him. On looking at that beautiful lovely child, the famous King Harivarmā’s face got cheered up with the intensest delight. The King took it up with both of his hands and got merged in the Ocean of Bliss and taking gladly the scent of its head embraced it happily. On looking at the beautiful lotus-face of the child, the King, choked with tears from his eyes and with feelings of joy said:-- “O Child! Nārāyana has given me, the child jewel in you; so save me from the terrors of the hell named Put. O Child! For full one hundred years I have practised a very hard tapasyā for the sake of you. Pleased with that, the Lord of Kamalā has given you to me for the happiness of my worldly career. Your Mother Ramā Devī has forsaken Her own child for the sake of me and has gone away with Hari. O Child! That Mother is blessed whose face beams with joy by seeing the smiles in your lotus-face. O Delighter of my heart! The Lord of Ramā, the Deva of the Devas, has made you, as it were, to serve as a boat for me for crossing to the other side of this Ocean of World.” Thus saying, the King took the child and gladly went home. Knowing that the King had come very close to his city, the King’s Minister and the city people, the subjects came forward with the priest and many other presents and offerings. The bards, singers and Sûtas came in front of the King. The King as he entered into his city looked affectionately on his subjects and gladdened their spirits by enquiries of welfare. Then worshipped by the citizens, the King entered into the city with his child. As the King went along the royal road, the subjects showered on his head the flowers and fried rice. Then taking the child by his two arms, the King entered into his prosperous palace with his ministers.

The king next handed over the newly-born lovely child, as beautiful as Cupid, to the hands of his queen. The good queen took the child and asked the king:-- “O King! Whence have you got this new born child as fascinating as the God of Love? Who has given this child to you? O Lord! Speak quickly. This child has stolen away my mind.” The King gladly replied:-- “O Beloved! The Lord of Kamalā, the Ocean of Mercy has given me this child; O Quick-eyed One! This child is born of Nārāyana’s part and out of the womb of Kamalā. O Devī! This child has strength, energy, patience, gravity and all other good qualities.” Then the queen took the child in her arms and got the unbounded bliss. Great festivities began to be performed in the palace of the King Turvasu. Charities were given to those that wanted; music and singing of various sorts were performed. In this ceremony for the sake of his child, the king Turvasu put the name of the child as “Ekavīra.” Getting thus the child equivalent in form and qualities to Hari, the powerful Indra-like king became happy and freed from his debt due to his family line, became very cheerful and glad. O King! The king, powerful like his enemies, began to enjoy in his own palace with his all-qualified child, that was given to him by Nārāyana, the Lord of all the Devas. He was always served by his dear wife and all sorts of pleasures and he felt himself enjoying as a King would do.

Here ends the Twentieth Chapter in the Sixth Book on the son born of mare by Hari, in the Mahāpurānam in S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XXI
On the installation of Ekavīra and the birth of Ekāvalī

1-10. Vyāsa said:-- O King! In the meanwhile the King Turvasu performed the Jātakarma (a religious ceremony performed at the birth of a child) and other ceremonies of the child. The boy was nurtured duly and began to grow older day by day. The King began to enjoy his worldly life on getting this son and thought within himself that the boy had freed him from the three debts due to the Fathers, the Risis and the Devas. Next, in the sixth month, the King performed the Annaprāsana ceremony (putting the boiled rice in the mouth of the child) and in the third year performed regularly his Chûda Karana (the ceremony of the first tonsure) ceremony. He distributed on those occasions various articles, wealth and cows to the Brāhmanas and other articles to various other mendicants and made them glad. In the eleventh year, he performed the boy’s holy thread (Upanayana) ceremony and tying the girdle made of a triple string of Munja grass and put the boy to learn archery. Next when the boy passed off proficiently in the study of the Vedas and in learning the kingly duties, the King desired to install him on the throne. The King Turvasu then collected with great care all the necessary articles for installation in an auspicious day, the combination of Pusyā asterism and Arka Yoga. He called then the Brāhmins, well versed in the Vedas and in the S’āstras, and became ready, in accordance with due rites, to perform the installation ceremony of the prince. Waters were brought from various sacred places of pilgrimage and from the several oceans and on an auspicious day the King performed himself the installation of his son. When the ceremony was over the King gave away hoards of wealth to the Brāhmins and giving the charge of his kingdom to his son, he went to the forest with a desire to ascend to the Heavens.

11-22. Thus placing Ekavīra on the throne, the King Turvasu shewed respects to his ministers, and, controlling his senses went to the forest accompanied by his wife. On the top of the Maināka mountain he took up the vow of Vānaprastha and sustaining his life on leaves and fruits began to meditate Pārvatī. Thus when his Prārabdha Karma ended, he left his mortal coil with his wife and went by virtue of his good deeds to the Indraloka. Hearing that the King had ascended to Heavens, his son Ekavīra Haihaya performed his funeral ceremonies according to the rules laid down by the Vedas. The King’s son, the intelligent Haihaya, performed, one after another, all the ceremonies due and began to govern the kingdom which was free from enemies. The virtuous King Ekavīra remained duly obedient to his ministers after he got possession of his kingdom and began to enjoy all the best things. The powerful King one day went on horseback to the banks of the Ganges with the minister’s son. Roaming about, he found there the boughs of trees had assumed a very graceful appearance, with loads of fruits, echoed with the sweet voice of the cuckoos and with the humming of the bees. Close by were the hermitages of the Munis, where the bucks were skipping about and at other places the Vedas were being chanted. The smoke was seen rising from the altars, where oblations were being offered and appeared to form like a black canopy in the Heavens. Full ripe grains were enhancing the beauty of the fields and the cowherdesses were merrily watching the fields. Places of recreations adorned with full blown lotuses and beautiful groves were attracting the attention of the visitors. The various trees, Piyāla, Champaka, Panasa, Bakula, Tilaka, Kadamba and Mandāra, and others were adorned with fruits, stealing away the minds of the people. At other places, other trees Sal, Tamāla, Jack, Mango, Kali Kadamba, etc., stood gracefully. Next when the King went to the Ganges water, he saw the gay beautiful full blown lotuses were spreading their fragrant scents all around.

23-31. On the right side of these lotuses, he saw a lotus-eyed girl. She was shining like the gold, her beautiful hairs were long and curling; her throat was like a Kambu, belly thin, lips like the Bimba fruits, several other limbs well built and graceful, breasts risen a little, nose beautiful and all her body was exquisitely lovely; that lady just blooming into youth was suffering bereavements from her comrades and was very distressed and seemed bewildered. She was crying like an ewe in a dense lonely forest. Seeing her, the King asked her what was the reason of her sorrows? O Cuckoo-voiced One! You are as yet a girl; who has left you alone in this state? O Sweet One! Tell me where is your husband now or where is your father? O One looking askance! What is your trouble; explain it to me. O thin-bellied One! I will, no doubt, remove all your sorrows and troubles. O fair-limbed One! In my dominion nobody ever gives trouble to any other body. O lovely One! There is no fear in my kingdom from thieves or Rāksasas; or any fear from any serious dangerous calamities on this earth, fear from lions, tigers or any other dangers while my sway is predominant.

32-41. O One of beautiful thighs! Why are you crying on this lonely bank of the Ganges? Tell me what is your pain? O Pure One! I can remove the pains and miseries, even of a serious nature, of men, whether they come from the Deva or human sources; and this is my principal vow. O Large-eyed One! Speak what is your inmost desire; I will carry it out instantaneously. When the king thus spoke, that beautiful woman spoke in gentle words:-- O King! Hear the cause of my sorrows. O King! Why will the people cry, to no purpose, unless calamities come before them? O Mighty-armed One! I now tell you why I am weeping. O King! There was a very religious King named Rabhya in another province that is not yours. At first he had no issue. He had a very beautiful wife named Rukmarekhā. She was clever, chaste and endowed with all auspicious qualities. But issueless as she was, she remained very sorry and, in a remorseful tone, she spoke to her husband Raibbya:-- O Lord! I am barren; I have no sons; I am therefore a very unhappy creature. My life is in vain; what use is there in my living? When the queen thus spoke very distressedly, the king called the Brāhmanas, versed in the Vedas, and began to perform an excellent sacrificial ceremony, in due accordance with the Vedic rules. With a desire to get a son, he made many presents in profuse quantities. When copious quantities of ghee were offered as oblations, there arose, from the fire, a girl beautiful in all respects and endowed with all auspicious signs.

42-53. Her teeth were very nice, eyebrows very lovely, face enchanting like a Full Moon, the lustre of the body lovely and of a golden colour; her hairs were fine and curling; her lips like the Bimba flowers; her hands and face were of a red colour; her eyes were red like lotus and her limbs were soft and gentle. When the girl arose from the fire, the priest (Hotā) took that lean and thin lady of a nice waist by her arms and presented her to the King and said:-- O King! Accept this daughter, endowed with all auspicious signs. When Homa was being performed, the daughter came up like the garland Ekāvalī; therefore this girl became famous in this world by the name Ekāvalī. O Ruler of the earth! Take this girl, resembling a son and be happy.

O King! Visnu, the Deva of the Devas, has given you this Jewel, this daughter; so be contented. Hearing thus the words of the priest, the King saw this good-looking girl and with gladdened heart took the beautiful daughter from his hands. Thus with that lovely daughter he went to his wife Rukmarekhā and said:-- O Beautiful One! Take this daughter. The queen Rukmarekhā felt the pleasure of having a son when she got in her arms that lotus eyed beautiful daughter. The King next performed the natal and other ceremonies of the daughter and did all other acts as if she had been a son to him duly in accordance with the rules. The King performed his own sacrificial ceremonies and gave away lots of Daksinās to the Brāhmins and dismissed them and became very glad. That beautiful girl was nursed and cared after like a son and she grew older day by day. The Queen Rukmarekhā was very gladdened to get her. On that very day the birthday festival was performed as on the occasion of the birth of a son. And that daughter grew older, very affectionate and dear to all.

54-61. O Lovely One! You are a king and intelligent too; I will describe to you all the details; Hear. I am the daughter of the minister to that King. My name is Yas’ovatī. That daughter and I look alike and of the same age. Therefore the king has made me her comrade. I spend my time day and night always with her as her constant dear companion. Ekāvalī likes very much to remain and sport wherever she finds sweet-scented lotuses; at other places she does not find happiness. At the distant banks of the Ganges many lotuses grow; therefore Ekāvalī goes there with great pleasure to that place with me and her other fellow mates. One day I told the King that Ekāvalī used to go daily to a distant solitary forest to see the lotus-lake. Then the King addressed her not to go and he got a lake built within the compounds of his palace and planted many lotus seeds therein. Gradually the lotuses began to blossom and the bees came there to drink honey. Still she used to go outside in search of lotuses. Then the King sent armed guards to accompany her. Thus that thin-bodied daughter of the King used to go daily to the banks of the Ganges for play, guarded by armed soldiers, accompanied by myself and other companions. Again when the sporting was over, she used to return to the palace.

Here ends the Twenty-First Chapter on the Sixth Book on the installation of Ekavīra and the birth of Ekāvalī in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devi Bhāgavatam by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XXII
On the narration to Haihaya the stealing away of Ekāvalī

1-10. Yas’ovatī spoke:-- O King! One day Ekāvalī got up early in the morning and went to the banks of the Ganges, accompanied by her companions; they began to fan her with a chowrie. The armed guards accompanied her. Slowly she went where there were the lotuses in order to sport with them. I, too, went with her playing with the lotuses to the banks of the Ganges and both of us began to play with lotuses with the Apsarās. When both of us were deeply engaged in the play, then one powerful Dānava, named Kālaketu, came up there suddenly with many Rāksasas armed with parighas, swords, clubs, bows, arrows and tomaras and many other weapons. Ekāvalī was playing with the best lotuses when Kālaketu saw her in that state, blooming with beauty and youth as if like Ratī, the Goddess of Love. O King! I then spoke to Ekāvalī:-- “Look! Who is this Daitya that has come here unexpectedly; O Lotus-eyed One! Let us go into the central part of our armed guards.” O King! My companion and myself consulting thus, went out of fear immediately into the centre of the armed guards. Kālaketu was seized with the arrows of Cupid, and no sooner he looked at that beautiful young lady than he, with a very big club in his hand, hurriedly came to us, drove away the guards, and took away my lotus eyed companion, of thin waist. Then the young lady, helpless, began to tremble and cried aloud.

11-22. Seeing this, I spoke to the Dānava:-- Leave her and take me. The passionate Dānava did not take me but he went away, taking my companion. The guards exclaimed:-- “Wait, wait; don’t fly away with the girl; we are giving you a good lesson.” Thus saying, they made the powerful Dānavas stop and both the parties engaged in a very terrible conflict, astounding to all. The followers of the Dānavas, more cruel and all fully armed began at once to fight with great enthusiasm for their Master’s cause. Kālaketu himself began to fight afterwards terribly and killed the guards. He, then, with his followers, carried away my companion towards his own city. I, too, followed my companion, when I saw her thus carried away by the Dānava and crying out of fear. I also walked crying aloud by those tracks as would enable my Sakhī to see me. She, too, seeing me, became somewhat consoled. Crying out repeatedly I approached her. She was already very distressed and when she saw me, she clasped me closely around my neck, perspiring and stunned and, becoming more distressed, cried aloud. Kālaketu then showed his liking for me and told that my quick-eyed companion was very afraid and that I might comfort her. He told me thus:-- “O Dear! My city is like the Deva’s abodes; you will soon be able to go there. From today I become your slave, bound by love. Do not cry thus distressedly; be comforted.” In these words he told me to comfort my dear companion. Thus speaking, that villain made both of us mount on the beautiful chariot and making us sit by his sides went gladly and quickly to his own beautiful palace, followed by his army.

23-30. That Demon placed both of us in a beautiful house white washed and mirror-like and kept hundreds and thousands of Rāksasas to watch and protect us. On the second day he called me in private:-- “Your companion is very much distressed on the bereavement from her father and mother and is lamenting; make her understand and console her.” He told me to speak the following words to my companion:-- “O One of beautiful hips! Be my wife and enjoy as you like. O One with a face beautiful like the Moon! This kingdom is yours; ever I am your obedient slave.” Hearing his unbearable harsh words I said:-- “O Lord! I will not be able to speak her these words, disagreeable to her. You better speak this yourself.” When I spoke thus, that wicked Dānava struck by the arrows of Cupid began to speak gently to my dear companion of thin belly, thus:-- “O Dear One! Today you have successfully cast on me the Vasīkarana Mantra (one of the Tāntrik processes by which a lover is made to come under subjection); O Beloved! Therefore it is that my heart is stolen and so much brought under your subjection; this has converted me into a veritable slave of yours; then know this as certain that I am your slave; O Sweet One!

I am very much troubled by the Cupid’s arrows and I am semi-unconscious; therefore O Lean-bellied One! Worship me. O One of beautiful thighs! This youth is a very rare and transient thing; O Auspicious One! Now embrace me as your husband and make your youth a veritable success.”

31-36. Ekāvalī said:-- “O Fortunate One! My father wanted to hand me over to a prince named Haihaya; I also mentally adopted him as my husband. You are certainly aware of the S’āstras; how can I now abandon the eternal religion and the virtue of a woman and take up another husband. The girl must accept him to whom the father betrothes. The girl is under every circumstances dependent. Never do they get any independence.” Though Ekāvalī said thus, the vicious Daitya struck by Cupid’s arrows, did not desist and did not leave me and that larged-eyed companion. His city lies in Pātāla and is a very dangerous place; always it is guarded by Rāksasas and surrounded by a moat; inside is built a beautiful and strong fort. Now my dear companion, the queen of my heart, is staying there with a grievous heart and I am here wandering hither and thither very much troubled on account of her bereavements.

37-46. Ekavīra said:-- “O Beautiful-faced One! How have you been able to get away from the city of that wicked demon and how have you been able to come here? I am perfectly at my wit’s end. Say quickly all these. O Proud One! I doubt your words; the father of your dear companion resolved to give his daughter to Haihaya in marriage; now I am that Haihaya. I am the King by that name, on this earth; there is no other King by the name of Haihaya. Is it that your dear companion is meant for me? O Bhāminī (passionate woman)! Remove my doubts; I will kill that villain Rāksasa and bring just now your dear companion; there is no doubt in this. O One of good vows! Shew me that place, if it be known to you. Has anybody informed her father that She is suffering from so many troubles? Has her father come to know that her daughter has been stolen and carried away? And has he made any effort to rescue her from the hands of that villain Rāksasa? Is it that the King is calm and quiet, knowing that his daughter has been kept in prison? Or is it that he is unable to free her from bondage? Say quickly all these things before me. O Lotus-eyed One! You have captivated my mind by describing the extraordinary qualities of your dear companion and have made me passionate too. Alas! When will it be that I will free my beautiful beloved from the greatest perilous situation and shall see her face and her eyes, beaming with joy. O Sweet-speaking One! Say, by what means I can go to that impassable city. How have you been able to come from there?”

47-63. Yas’ovatī said:-- O King! In my early age I got the Mantram of the Devī Bhagavatī with its seed Mantram (mystic syllable involving in it the power connoted by the Devī) and how to meditate it. While I was in the Dānava’s place I thought out that at that juncture I would worship the powerful Chandikā who gives instantaneously one’s own desires. If I worship that S’akti, That fructifies all desires, That is all mercy to Her Bhaktas, certainly She will free my dear companion from this her bondage. Though She is really without form, yet She, without anybody’s help, by Her own force, She is creating, preserving, and at the end of the Kalpa, destroying this Universe. Oh! She is very wonderful indeed! Thus thinking I began to meditate that auspicious red-robed and red-eyed Devī, the Lady of the Universe, and recollected mentally Her form and repeated silently Her Vīja Mantram. When I meditated thus for merely one month, Chandikā Devī became, through my devotion, manifest to me in my dreams and began to speak in sweet nectar-like words:-- “You are now asleep; go quickly to the beautiful banks of the Ganges. The enemy destroyer, the powerful Ekavīra, the greatest of all the kings, will come there. Dattātreya, the Great Lord of the Munis, has given him my Mantra named Mahāvidyā; the King also constantly worships me devotedly with that. His mind is constantly attached to Me and he constantly worships Me. What more to say than this fact that the king, extremely devoted to Me, meditates on Me as the internal controller of all beings. That intelligent son of Laksmī will come for sport to the banks of the Ganges and will remove all your sorrows. That king Ekavīra, versed in all the S’āstras will kill the Rāksasas in a dreadful battle and will rescue Ekāvalī. So now you pay heed to my word.” Lastly, She told me that my companion should marry that beautiful King, endowed with all auspicious qualifications. Thus saying, She disappeared and I instantly woke up. Then I informed my lotus-eyed dear Sakhī all the details of my dream as well my worshipping the Devī; hearing this, her lotus-face beamed with joy and gladness. That sweet-smiling Ekāvalī very gladly told me, “O dear Companion! Go at once for our success. That truth-speaking Bhagavatī Ambikā Devī will release us from our bondage.” O King! When my dear companion ordered me thus, I thought it proper, as also dictated to me in my dream, to go out and soon I did it. O King! Due to the grace of the Great Devī, I came to know the way and I also got the quick motion. Thus I have described to you the cause of my sorrow. O Hero! Who are you, whose son are you? Speak truly to me.

Here ends the Twenty-second Chapter in the Sixth Book on the narration to Haihaya the stealing away of Ekāvalī in S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XXIII
On the battle of Haihaya and Kālaketu

1. Vyāsa said:-- O King! That powerful son of Laksmī, Haihaya, became very glad to hear these words of Yas’ovatī and said:--

2-14. O One of beautiful thighs! Hear in reply to your query:-- I am Haihaya, the son of Laksmī, and I am known in this world by the name of Ekavīra. Now you have made my mind dependent. What am I to do now? where to go? Thus distressed with bereavement from your dear companion, my mind is struck with Cupid’s arrows and is confounded with her extraordinary beauty that you just now described. Next you described her qualifications and my mind is ravished. Again when you described before me what she uttered in the presence of the Rāksasa, I am struck with great wonder. Your dear companion Ekāvalī said before the vicious Dānava Kālaketu, “I have already selected the King Haihaya. I will not select any other than him, this is my firm resolve.” These words have converted me into her slave. O sweet-haired One! Say now what service can I do to you both? I am not acquainted with that wicked demon’s palace; never I went to his city. O Fair-eyed One! Say how I can go there; for you are the only one that can lead me there. Therefore take me quickly to that place where your beautiful clear companion is staying. Your dear companion, the daughter of the King is very much afflicted with sorrow; soon I will free her, by destroying that cruel Rāksasa. There is no doubt in this. O Auspicious One! I will rescue your dear companion and bring her to the city of yours and hand her over to the hands of her father. Then that King, the enemy destroyer, will perform the marriage ceremony of his daugther. I think this is the desire of your heart. O Sweet-speaking One! Know that that is also my desire. O Beautiful One! Now that desire will be fulfilled by your efforts. Show me quickly that place and see my prowess. O One with a face beautiful like the Moon! It seems that you will be able to do my work. Soon do such as I can kill that wicked demon, who steals others’ wives. Now show me the way to the impassable city of that Rāksasa.

15-26. Vyāsa said:--O King! Hearing the sweet words of the prince, Yas’ovatī became very glad and gently began to speak out how he could go to the demon’s city. O King! Take the success-giving Mantra of Bhagavatī and I would then be able to show you today the city guarded by the Rāksasas. O King! Better arrange to take your vast army with you; for you will have to fight no sooner you go there. Kālaketu is personally a great warrior surrounded by Rāksasas of great power and strength. Therefore be initiated in the Mantram of S’rī Bhagavatī and accompany me. So you will surely be successful. I will show you the way to the city of that Demon. Slay that vicious and vilest of the Rāksasas and rescue my dear companion. Hearing thus, Haihaya was duly initiated into the great Mantram of Yoges’varī, named Trilokitilaka Mantra (Hrīm Gaurī Rudradayite Yoge S’varī Hûm Phat Svāhā is the Yoges’varī Mantra), by Maharsi Dattātreya, accidentally come there (as if ordained by Fate), the chief of Jñānins (the Gnostics), that is conducive to the welfare of the beings. Thus by the influence of the Mantram the King got the power of knowing all things and going everywhere with unobstructed speed. Then the King Haihaya quickly went with Yas’ovatī to the impassable city of the Rāksasas, accompanied by a vast army. The city was surrounded by snakes and guarded by the terrible Rāksasas like the city of Pātāla. The messengers of the Rāksasa, seeing the King coming, were struck with terror and crying aloud quickly went to Kālaketu. Kālaketu, struck with Cupid’s arrows, was sitting beside Ekāvalī and was speaking many modest words when the messenger went there suddenly and said:-- “O King! The attendant of this lady Yas’ovatī is coming here with a prince and an army.

27-29. O King! We cannot tell exactly whether the prince is the son of Indra, named Jayanta or Kārtikeya. After all, puffed up with the strength of his army, he is coming here. O King! The battle is imminent; now make your arrangements fully and carefully; fight with the son of a Deva or abandon this lotus-eyed Lady. O King! At a distance of three Yojanas from this place, be is staying with his army. Now equip yourself and quickly declare the war by blowing the war trumpets.”

30-36. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing the messenger’s words, Kālaketu, the King of the Demons, became overwhelmed with anger and at once sent many powerful Rāksasas, holding all sorts of weapons and spoke out to them:-- “O Rāksasas! With weapons in your hands, go before them quickly.” Ordering them thus, Kālaketu asked in sweet words Ekāvalī who was in front and very distressed. O Thin-bellied One! Who is coming here? Is he your father or any other man coming with his army to release you. Speak this to me truly. If your father comes here to take you back, being very much distressed with your bereavement, I will never fight with him, if I come to know this truly; rather I will bring him to my house and worship him with the excellent horses, gems and jewels and clothings. Really I will show my full hospitality duly to him when he comes here. And if any other person comes, then I will take his life by the sharpened arrows; there is no doubt in this. Know this as certain whoever comes here for your rescue is brought by the hand of Death to me. Therefore, O Large-eyed One! Say who is this fool that is coming, not knowing me as the powerful and unconquerable Kāla (Death).

37-38. Ekāvalī said:-- “O Highly Fortunate One! I do not know who is this body coming to this side with a violent speed. O King! How can I know that when I am in this state of confinement in your house. This man is not my father nor my brother. Some other powerful man is coming here. I do not know exactly what for he is coming.”

39-40. The Demon said:-- My messengers say that your comrade Yas’ovatī has taken with her that warrior and is coming to this side with great energy. Where has your clever companion gone now? O Lotus-eyed! There is no enemy in the three worlds strong enough to fight against me.

41-66. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Just then other messengers hurriedly came there terrified and spoke to Kālaketu who had been staying in the house, thus:-- “O King! The army has come quite close to the city and how are you staying in the house, calm and quiet? Better march out of the city with your vast army as early as possible.” The powerful Kālaketu, then, hearing their words, mounted on the chariot and quickly went out of his city. The King Haihaya, on the other hand, suffering from the bereavements of his dear lady, suddenly came there mounted on horseback. The terrible fight ensued then and there between the two and each one struck the other with sharpened weapons and the quarters all around blazed with their glitterings and clashings. When the terrible fight was going on, Haihaya, the son of Laksmī, struck Kālaketu, the King of the Daityas with a very powerful club (Gadā). Thus struck by the Gadā, the Lord of the Daityas fell on the ground like a mountain, struck by lightning, and died. All the Rāksasas fled away on all sides, struck with terror. Yas’ovatī went then very hurriedly with a gladdened heart to Ekāvalī and began to speak to her in terms of surprise and in sweet words:-- O Dear! O Dear! Come, Come; the great warrior, the prince Ekavīra has killed the Lord of the Daityas in a dreadful battle. That King is now waiting, tired in the midst of his soldiers. He has already heard from me about your beauty and qualities; and now he is expecting to see you. O One Looking askance! Now satisfy your eyes and mind by seeing that King who is like the Cupid. When I described to him before on the banks of the Ganges your beauty and qualifications, he got enamoured of you and now he is suffering from bereavements and wants to see you. Thus, hearing, Ekāvalī determined to go to him and as she was yet unmarried, she became abashed and afraid. She thought how could she see the prince as she was unmarried. It might be that he being passionate would catch her by her arms. Thus, troubled with thought, that daughter of the King, with a sad look, and wearing poor clothes, Ekāvalī went with Yas’ovatī on a palanquin, carried on men’s shoulders. Seeing that large-eyed daughter of the King coming there, the prince said:-- “O Beautiful One! My two eyes are very thirsty to see you. Satisfy my eyes and mind by showing yourself to me.” Seeing the prince passionate and the King’s daughter very much abashed, Yas’ovatī, who knew the rules of modesty, thus spoke to the prince:-- “ O Prince! The father of my dear companion expressed a desire to betroth her to your hands. She is also obedient to you. Therefore your meeting will certainly take place. O King! Wait; take her to her father; and he will perform duly the marriage ceremony and betroth her to your hands. Know this to be quite certain.” The King took her words to be quite just and true and taking those two ladies went with his army to the house of the father of Ekāvalī. Ekāvalī’s father became very glad and cheerful to learn that his daughter was coming and, accompanied by his ministers, went hurriedly to her. After a long time the King saw his daughter in poor clothings and became highly pleased. Yas’ovatī then described in detail all what happened before the King. The King then with his minister brought with great love, courtesy and gentleness Ekavīra to his house and on an auspicious day performed the marriage ceremony of him with Ekāvalī, in accordance with due ceremonies and rites. Then the King gave away many clothings, ornaments, jewels, and articles for fitting a house and many other things and worshipped duly and sent his daughter together with Yas’ovatī away with the King Haihaya. Thus the marriage ceremony was performed and the son of Laksmī gladly returned to his house and began to enjoy many pleasures with his wife. Then, in course of time, in the womb of Ekāvalī the King Haihaya got a son named Kritavīrya. The son of this Kritavīrya is known as Kārtavīrya. O King! Thus I have narrated to you the origin of the Haihaya dynasty.

Here ends the Twenty-third Chapter in the Sixth Book on the battle of Haihaya and Kālaketu in the Mahā Purānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XXIV
On the description of Viksepa S’akti

1-5. The King Janamejaya said:-- “O Bhagavān! I am not satiated with the drink of the divine sweet nectar-like words coming out of your lotus mouth. You have described to me in detail the wonderful and variegated story of the origin of the Haihaya dynasty; but, O Muni! There has arisen in my mind a curiosity to know something more on this subject. See the Bhagavān Visnu, the Lord of Laksmī, the Deva of the Devas, the Ruler of this whole Universe and the Cause of the Creation, Preservation and Destruction; yet that Best of Purusas S’rī Bhagavān had to assume a horse form. He is undecaying and independent, how then He came to be dependent? Clear this doubt of mine. O Best of Munis! You are omniscient; therefore satisfy my curiosity by describing this wonderful event.”

6-16. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hear what I heard of yore from Nārada how this doubt was removed. The mind-born son of Brahmā, Maharsi Nārada got powers to go everywhere by virtue of his Tapas, could know everything, was of a calm and quiet nature, dear to all and he was a poet. On one occasion he went out on tour round the world, playing with his lute in time with Svar and Tān. One day he came to my Ās’rama, singing many things concerning Brihat Rathantara Sāma Veda and the sweet nectar-like Gāyatrī, the Giver of Liberation. O King! There was a very sacred place of hermitage, beaming as it were with happiness and self-knowledge, named S’amyāprāsa, on the banks of the river Sarasvatī. There was situated my hermitage. Seeing the lustrous Nārada the son of the Grand Sire Brahmā, coming, I got up and offered him duly Pādya (water to wash his feet) and Argha (offerings of worship), etc., and worshipped him. When that Muni of indomitable lustre took his seat on the Āsana, I sat beside him. When I found Nārada, the Giver of Knowledge, at rest and quiet, I duly asked him the very same question that you have asked me just now. O Best of Munis! What happiness is there on the beings taking their birth in this world. I never found it in any place or in any concern, this I can say positively. Still why do the high minded persons do Karma, fascinated by the enchantments of the world. Look! I was born in an island. Just after my birth, my mother forsook me. Helpless, I grew in the forest as my Karma allowed. Next I performed a very severe tapasyā before Mahādeva, the Deva of the Devas, on the mountain with a desire to have a son.

17-38. As a fruit of that I got S’uka as my son, the foremost of the Gnostics, and taught him completely the essence of the Vedas from the beginning to the end. O Devarsī! When my son got wisdom from you, he left this world even when I became very distressed on his bereavement and wept aloud and he went away to the next world. Very much afflicted for the parting of my son, I abandoned the great Mountain Meru. I got very lean due to the absence of my dear son whom I loved very much; and becoming very distressed and knowing this whole world to be an illusion, I remembered my mother and went to the Kuru Jāngala district, as if bound up and controlled by the snares of Māyā. When I heard that the King S’āntanu had married my mother, I built my hermitage on the holy banks of the Sarasvatī and remained there. When the King S’āntanu went to the next world, my chaste mother remained with two sons. At that time Bhīsma looked after their sustenance and maintained them. The intelligent Gangā’s son Bhīsma Deva installed Chitrāngada on the throne. A short while after this, Chitrāngada, too, looking like a second Cupid and extremely lovely, went to the jaws of death. The mother Satyavatī was drowned in the sorrows for his son Chitrāngada and began to weep for him. O King! Knowing my mother in that sorrowful condition, I went to her. Bhīsma and I then consoled her with hopeful words. Bhīsma Deva was averse to marrying and then becoming a King; and, therefore, he installed again the younger brother, the powerful Vichitravīrya on the throne. O King! Bhīsma defeated by his own prowess the kings and brought the two daughters of the King Kās’īrāj and handed them over to Satyavatī, so that she might give them over to Vichitravīrya. Then, on an auspicious day, and in an auspicious Lagna (moment) when the marriage ceremony of my brother Vichitravīrya was performed, I became glad. My brother, a good archer, was shortly afterwards attacked with consumption and thus he died without any issue. At this my mother became very sad and dejected. Seeing the husband dead, the two daughters of Kās’īrāja became ready to preserve their religion of chastity and said to their mother-in-law, sorrowful and weeping:-- We two shall accompany our husbands and become Satī (i.e., be burnt up with our husbands). O Devī! We will go to the Heavens with your son. We, the two sisters united, will enjoy with him in the Nandana Garden. The mother was very much attached to them and with the permission of Bhīsma Deva, very affectionately made them desist from this great attempt. When all the funeral obsequies of Vichitravīrya were over, my mother consulted with Bhīsma and remembered me in Hastinānagara. As soon as she remembered me, immediately I knew her mental feelings and hurriedly came to Hastinānagara and, with my head bowed, fell prostrate before her feet, and with folded hands addressed my mother who was very much inflamed with the fire of sorrow for the death of her son, thus:-- O Mother! Why have you called me here mentally? I see you are very much dejected; I am your servant; order me what I can do for you. O Mother! You are my greatest place of pilgrimage and you are my highest deity; I am very anxious since I have come here; say what you desire.

39-44. Vyāsa said:-- O Best of Munis! When I said thus and waited before her, then she looked at Bhīsma standing close by and said:-- “O Child! Your brother died of consumption; therefore I am very sorrowful, lest the family becomes extinct. O Intelligent One! For the continuance of the line, then, with the permission of the Gangā’s son, I have called you here today by the Samādhi Yoga. O son of Parās’ara! You re-establish the name of S’āntanu that is going now to be well nigh extinct. O Vyāsa Deva! Relieve me soon from this sorrow of mine, lest this line be extinct. There are the two daughters of Kās’īrāja, honest and good and endowed with youth and beauty. O Highly Intelligent One! Better you cohabit with them and save the family of Bhārata by begetting sons. You will not be touched with any sin.”

45-55. Vyāsa said:-- O Devarsī! Hearing the mother’s words, I became very anxious and humbly told her with great shame:-- “O Mother! To touch another’s wife is a very sinful act; knowing well the path of Dharma, how can I willingly and intentionally violate that? So also, the Maharsis say:-- That the wife of a younger brother is like a daughter. Studying all the Vedas, how can I do this blame-worthy and adulterous act? To preserve a line of family by illegal ways is never to be done; for then the fathers of the sinners can never cross this ocean of world. How can he, who is the spiritual preceptor of all, and the writer of all the Purānas, do this act knowingly which is awfully strange and very bad and nasty in its nature.” My mother was very much plunged into the sea of sorrows for the bereavement of her son; so to preserve the family, She came again to me, weeping and said:-- “O son of Parās’ara! If you follow my word, you won’t incur any sin. O Child! If the reasonable words of the Gurus be even faulty, one should obey them according to the tradition of the S’istas. Therefore, O Child! Keep my word and preserve my honour; no sin will touch you. O Child! Think very well. Your mother is very sorry and is immersed in the ocean of afflictions; therefore it is your paramount duty to make her happy by begetting child for the continuance of the family.” Hearing my mother speaking to me thus, Bhīsma, the Gangā’s son, the expert in finding out truth in fine points with regard to Dharma, said to me:-- O Dvaipāyana! You are wholly sinless; you ought not therefore to argue on this point; obey your mother as she says and be happy.

56-61. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Hearing his words and my mother’s request, I decided to do this very hateful act with a fearless heart without any suspicion. When Ambikā finished her ablutions after menstruation, I gladly cohabited with her in the night; but that young lady seeing my ugly ascetic form, was not attached to me; I then cursed that beautiful woman thus:-- As you closed your eyes at the first cohabitation with me, your son will be born blind. O Muni! On the second day my mother enquired me when I was alone:-- O Dvaipāyana! Will there be born a son of the daughter of Kās’īrāj? I then bowed my head with shame, and told, “Mother! The son will be born blind, through my curse.” O Muni! The mother then rebuked me harshly, “O Child! Why did you curse that the son of Ambikā would be born blind?”

Here ends the Twenty-fourth Chapter in the Sixth Book on the description of Viksepa S’akti in the discourse between Vyāsa and Nārada in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XXV
On the cause of Moha of Vyāsa Deva asked before Nārada

1-10. Vyāsa said:-- OKing! The mother became astonished to hear me. Becoming very anxious for a son, she began to speak to me. O Child! The wife of your brother, the daughter Ambālikā of Kās’īrāj, is a widow; she is very sorrowful; she is endowed with all auspicious signs and endowed with all good qualities; better cohabit with that beautiful young wife and get a child according to the tradition of the S’istas. Persons born blind are not entitled to kingdoms. Therefore take my word and procreate a beautiful son and thus keep my honour. O Muni! Hearing the mother’s words, I began to wait in Hastināpura till Ambālikā, the daughter of Kās’īrāj, finished her ablutions after menstruation. That King’s daughter, of curling hairs, came to me alone at her mother-in-law’s order, and became very much abashed. Seeing me an ascetic with matted hairs on my head and void of every love sentiment, perspiration came on her face; her body turned pale and her mind void of any love towards me. When I saw that lady trembling and pale beside me, I angrily spoke:-- “O One of beautiful waist! When you have turned out pale, considering your own beauty, let your son be of a pale colour.” Thus saying I spent there that night with Ambālikā. After enjoying her I took farewell from my mother and went to my place.

11-21. In due course, the two daughters of the King gave birth to two sons respectively, one blind and the other pale. The son of Ambikā was named Dhritarāstra; and the son of Ambālikā was named Pāndu, as his colour was pāndu (pale). Mother became absent-minded when she saw the two sons in those states. After one year she again called me and said:-- “O Dvaipāyana! These two persons are not so fit to become kings; therefore beget one more son beautiful and according to my liking.” When I consented, she became very glad and, in due course, asked Ambikā to embrace me and give birth to a son, endowed with extraordinary qualities, and fit to preserve the line worthy of the Kuru dynasty. The bride did not then say anything on account of her bashfulness. But when I went in the night time according to my mother’s order, to the sleeping room, Ambikā sent to me a maid-servant of Vichitravīrya, full of youth and beauty, and adorned with various ornaments and clothings. That maid-servant of beautiful hairs and of a swan-like gait adorned with garlands and red sandal-paste, came to me with many enchanting gestures and making me take my seat on the cot, became herself merged in love sentiments. O Muni! I became pleased with her gestures and amorous sports and passed the night, full of love towards her and played and cohabited with her. At last I gladly gave her the boon, “O Fortunate One! Your child, begotten by me, will be endowed with all good qualities, will be of good form, will be conversant with all the essences of Dharma, calm and quiet and truthful.”

22-34. In due course, a child named Vidura was born to her. Thus I had three sons; and in my mind grew up Māyā and affection that these were my sons. When I saw again those three sons, heroic and full of manliness, the only cause of my sorrow due to the bereavement of my son S’uka vanished away from my mind. O Lord of Dvījas! Māyā is very powerful and extremely hard to be abandoned by those who are not masters of their senses; She enchants even the wise, though She does not possess any form nor any substratum nor any support. I could not find any peace, even in the forest, as my mind was attached to my mother and children. O Muni! My mind then began to oscillate like a pendulum and I remained sometime in Hastināpura and sometime on the banks of the Sarasvatī. I could not stay in a certain fixed place. By discrimination, the knowledge sometimes flashed in my mind:-- Whose sons are these? The attachment is nothing but merely a delusion. On my death they would not be entitled to perform my S’rāddha ceremony. These sons are begotten by ways and manners not sanctioned by Dharma; what happiness can they bring to me? O Muni! The powerful Māyā has caused this delusion in me. What! Knowing this Samsāra to be unreal, Alas! I have fallen into this well of the Darkness of delusion. Thus I repented when I thought over the matter deeply and when I was alone in a solitary place. When, subsequently, through the mediation of Bhīsma, the powerful Pāndu got the kingdom, I became pleased to see the prosperity of my son. O Muni! This is also the creation of Māyā. The daughter of the King S’ûrasena, named Kuntī, and the daughter of the King of Madra, named Mādrī became the two beautiful wives of Pāndu. Pāndu was cursed by a Brāhmana that he would die if he cohabited with any woman; he therefore became dispassionate and quitting his kingdom, went to the forest with his two wives. Hearing Pāndu gone to the forest I felt pain and went to my son who was staying with his wives and consoling him, came to Hastināpura, where I held a conversation with Dhritarāstra and then came back to the banks of the river Sarasvatī.

35-50. Pāndu in his forest life, got five sons out of his wives by the Devas Dharma, Vāyu, Indra, and the twin As’vins. Dharma, Vāyu, and Indra begat respectively of Kuntī the three sons Yudhisthira, Bhīmasena and Arjuna; and the two As’vins begat of Mādrī the two sons Nakulu and Sahadeva. Once Mādrī, full of youth and beauty, was staying alone in a solitary place and Pāndu seeing her embraced her and due to the curse, died. When the funeral pyre was ablaze, the chaste Mādrī entered into the fire and died a Satī. Kuntī was prevented from doing so, as she was to nurse and look after her young children. The Munis then took the sorrowful Kuntī, the daughter of S’ûrasena, bereft of her husband to Hastināpur and handed her over to the high-souled Bhīsma and Vidura. When I came to hear this, my mind was greatly agitated to see the pain and pleasure that other people suffered. Bhīsma, Vidura, and Dhritarāstra began to nourish and support Yudhisthira and others as they considered them the sons of their dearest Pāndu. The cruel and wicked sons of Dhritarāstra, Duryodhana and others united with each other and began to quarrel horribly with the sons of Pāndu. Dronāchārya came there accidentally and Bhīsma treated him with great respect and requested him to stay in Hastināpura and educate the sons of Kuru. Karna was the the son of Kuntī, when she was young and unmarried; and he was quitted by her no sooner he was born. The charioteer Sûta (or carpenter) Adhiratha found him in a river and nourished him. Karna was the foremost of the heroes and therefore the great favourite of Duryodhana. The enmity between Bhīma and Duryodhana, etc., began to grow greater day by day. Dhritarāstra, thinking the difficult situation of his children, fixed the residence of the sons of Pāndu at the Vāranāvata city so that the quarrels might die away. Out of enmity, Duryodhana ordered his dear friend Purochana to build there a house of lac for the Pāndavas. O Muni! When I heard that Kuntī and her five sons were burnt in the lac-house, I became merged in the ocean of sorrows and thought that they were my grandsons. I was overwhelmed with sorrow and began to search after them in deep forests day and night till at last I found them in Ekachakrā city, lean and thin and very much distressed with sorrow.

51-63. I became very glad to see them and sent them soon to the city of the King Drupada. Wearing the deer’s skin, they went there dejected with sorrow in the Brāhmin’s dress and stayed in the royal court. The victorious Arjuna shewed prowess and pierced the mark (the eye of the fish) and obtained Krisnā, the daughter of the King Drupada. By the order of the mother Kuntī, the five brothers married her. O Muni! I became very glad to see that they were all married. The Pāndavas , then, accompanied by Pānchālī, soon went to Hastināpura. Dhritarāstra then fixed Khāndavaprastha as the residence of the Pāndavas. Visnu, the son of Vāsudeva, then performed the Yajñā with the victorious Arjuna and satisfied the Great Fire. The Pāndavas next performed the Rājasûya sacrifice and that made me very glad. Seeing the affluence and prosperity of the Pāndavas and the great assembly hall beautiful and exquisitely artistic, Duryodhana was burnt up, as it were, with malice and made arrangements for play in dice, very injurious in its consequences. S’akuni was expert in playing deceitfully and Yudhisthira the son of Dharma, was not expert in this play. So Duryodhana made S’akuni play for him and stole away all that Yudhisthira had and insulted, at last, in the royal assembly, the daughter of Drupada, Yajñāsenī and gave her much trouble. The Pāndavas then went with Pānchālī in an exile in the forest for twelve years. And I was very much grieved to hear this O Muni! Though I know all about the Sanātan Dharma, yet I was deluded and merged in these worlds of pains and pleasures. Who am I? To whom do these sons belong? My mind roams day and night on the thought of all these. O Muni! What shall I do? And whither shall I go? I don’t find happiness anywhere; my mind is, as it were, floating in a rocking machine and it is never being fixed. O Best of Munis! You are all-knowing; solve my doubts so that my mental fever may be quietened and I may be happy.

Here ends the Twenty-fifth Chapter on the cause of Moha of Vyāsa Deva asked before Nārada in S’rī Mad Devi Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XXVI
On the description by Nārada of his own Moha

1-13. Vyāsa said:-- O King! When I asked him why this delusion overtook me, Maharsi Nārada smiled and said:-- “O son of Parās’ara! You are thoroughly acquainted with all the Purānas. Why then are you making this question about the cause of my Moha (delusion). No embodied soul can exist in this Samsāra without this Moha. Brahmā, Visnu, Rudra, and the other Devas, S’anaka, Kapila and the other Risis, all these are surrounded by Māyā and are thus travelling in this path of Samsāra. The people know me as a Jñānin; but I, too, am deluded like an ordinary man. I am now speaking to you as certain as anything my of previous history now. I was deluded by Māyā; hear it attentively. O Son of Vāsavī! Great troubles and pains were felt by me before, due to this Moha, for my wife. One day Parvata and I, the two Devarsis, went out together from the Devaloka to see the excellent portion of the earth named Bhārata and came to the Martyaloka or the land of the mortals. We then began to travel over various places and saw the places of pilgrimages and the holy places and the beautiful hermitages of the Munis. Before we went out from the Devaloka, we consulted with each other and entered into this agreement that we would not hide our feelings from each other, whether they be good or bad, while we would travel over the face of the earth. Whether it be our desire to get food, or wealth or women for enjoyment, whatever arises in the mind of any of us, we would express that freely amongst ourselves. Thus making an agreement, we went out in right earnest as Munis to travel over the face of this earth. Thus roaming all over the face of the earth, at the end of the summer season, when the rainy season commenced we came to the beautiful city of the King named S’anjaya. The King showed us great respect and worshipped us with devotion. Since then we remained for four months at his house.

14-33. During the four months of the rainy season, the roads are always almost impassable; it is, therefore, wise to stay at one place. For eight months, the Dvījas should always remain abroad on some work or other. Thinking all these, we two began to stay in the house of the King S’anjaya. That liberal minded King gladly and with respect kept us as his guests and tendered to us all our requirements. The King had a very beautiful daughter named Damayantī, with good teeth. The King ordered her to take care of us. That large-eyed princess, of great discrimination, was very energetic, day and night. She began to serve both of us. In due time she gave us water for our bath, excellent meat, food, towels for cleaning and rubbing our faces, in fact, everything what we desired. She kept ready for us whatever we desired, fans, seats, beds, whatever were necessary for us. Thus she began to serve. We were also engaged in the study of our Vedas and in those practises that were approved by the Vedas. O Dvaipāyana! I used to sing, then, with lute in my hands, the sweet lovely Sāma Gāyatrī songs in tunes and good Svaras. The princess herself appreciated the songs and when she heard these Sāma songs ravishing to one’s mind, she became attached to me and showed signs of affection. Day by day the attachment towards me grew stronger. Seeing her attached to me, my mind also became attached to her. Thus that princess indulged in amorous sentiments towards me and began to make slight distinctions between the food and other things offered to me and Parvata. I got warm water for my bath and Parvata used to get cold water; I got nice curds when food was served to me whereas Parvata got only whey. I got nice white bedding for myself to sleep on whereas Parvata had merely a dirty sheet to lie down. Thus the princess began to serve me with great love and devotion but not so she served Parvata. The fair lady began to look at me with eyes of love; not so towards Parvata. Parvata was very much surprised to see all this and thought within himself, “What is this?” Parvata, then, asked me in private:-- “O Nārada! Speak out to me truly in detail. The princess shews with much gladness and affection her deep love towards you; she serves you with dainty dishes but she behaves not so with me. I therefore suspect when I see all these distinctions made between you and me, that the daughter of the King S’anjaya wants with her heart and soul to make you her husband. And you also want to make her your wife. 1 have come to know this by signs and symptoms; for affection and love reigning inside can be made out by outward expressions of eyes and face. Whatever this be, O Muni! Now speak truly to me; do never tell a lie. When we went out from the Heavens, we made out that agreement; now remember that.”

34-42. Nārada said:-- Thus questioned suddenly by Parvata, I became very much abashed and said:-- “O Parvata! This large-eyes princess is ready to marry me and I am also very much attracted towards her.” When Parvata heard all these, he became very much angry and uttered repeatedly, “Fie! O Nārada! Fie! O Nārada! First you swore on oath and then you deceived me afterwards. Therefore, O Deceiver of friends! I curse you and let your face become that of a monkey.” When the high-souled Parvata cursed thus, the face turned immediately into that of a monkey, elongated and distorted. I did not excuse him, though he was my sister’s son. I also got angry and cursed him, “Certainly, your journey to the Heavens will be stopped. You will not be able to go to Heaven. O Parvata! When you cursed me so heavily for so trivial a fault of mine, I see you are very mean. Whatever it be, you will have to remain on earth so long.” At this Parvata became very sad and went out of the city. My face became immediately like that of a monkey. The daughter of the King became very sorry to see my face thus distorted into that of a monkey. I did not see her glad as she was before; but her desire to hear my playing with my lute remained the same as before.

43-52. Vyāsa said:-- O Muni! What happened next? How did you get yourself rid of your curse and how did you get your man-like face? Whither did Parvata Risi go! When and how did you again re-unite with each other? Kindly describe all these to me in detail. Nārada said:-- “O Highly Intelligent One! What shall I say about the nature of Māyā? When Parvata went away angrily, the daughter of the King began to serve me with greater care than before. I remained there, though Parvata went away, and seeing my face monkey-like, I became very dejected and sorry and was specially troubled with the care and anxiety what would happen to me hereafter? The King S’anjaya saw that his daughter Damayantī was slipping into her youth and asked the prime minister about her marriage. He said:-- “The time of marriage of my dear daughter has now come; I will now marry her in accordance with due rites and ceremonies. Now tell me particularly about a prince worthy of her, as we like, in beauty, qualifications, largeheartedness, calmness, patience and heroism and who is of a good family.” The minister said:-- “O King! There are many princes on the face of this earth, worthy in all respects, of your daughter. Whomever you like, you can call on him and give him your daughter with elephants, horses, chariots, wealth, gems and jewels.”

53-57. Damayantī, knowing the intention of his father informed the King of her own desire by her nurse and attendant. The nurse went to the King and said:-- “When my father will sit at his ease and comfort you would go and speak to him in private that I am enchanted with the enchanting Nāda sound of the great lute played by the Maharsi Nārada and have selected him as my bridegroom. No other person will be dear to me. O Father! Marry me with Nārada and thus fulfil my desire; O Knower of Dharma! I won’t marry anybody but Nārada. O Father! I am now merged in the Nāda-ocean (sound ocean) of bliss, sweet and joyful, void of anything destructive of happiness, void of Nakra, alligators, and fishes, Timingala, etc. (injurious animals) and without any salty taste; my mind won’t be satisfied with any other thing.”

Here ends the Twenty sixth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the description by Nārada of his own Moha in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa

Chapter XXVII
On the marriage of Nārada and his face
getting transformed into that of a monkey

1-13. Nārada said:-- On hearing these words of her daughter from her nurse, the King addressed the queen Kaikeyī, of lovely eyes, standing close by, thus:-- “Have you heard what the nurse has said? Damayantī has mentally chosen the monkey-faced Nārada as her husband. What has she thought? Whatever it be, it is no doubt, an act of great foolishness. His face is monkey-like; how can I betroth my daughter to him? Where is an ugly beggar Nārada? And where is my daughter Damayantī? The marriage between them is quite unjust; never it should take place. O Beautiful One of good hairs! Better call her before you in private and show her reasons approved of the S’āstras and of the aged persons and make her desist from such a rash course.” On hearing her husband’s words, the mother of Damayantī called her in private and said:-- “O Child! Where is your this beautiful face? And where is the monkey-like face of Nārada? You are smart and quick; how have you been, then, deluded by such a Moha? O Child! You are the daughter of a king! Your body is gentle like a creeper. And Nārada always besmears his body with ashes; so his body is very rough. O Spotless One! How will you change your words with him? Why do you shew your attachment to an ugly person? What pleasure do you feel thereby? You would be married to a beautiful prince; never follow this rash course; your father is very sorry to hear these from your nurse. O One of soft body! Judge this yourself, what intelligent man is there that is not sorry at the soft Mālatī creeper entwining a thorny tree? Even a stupid silly man would never feed a camel, that likes thorns, with soft betel-leaves. When your marriage time arrives, say yourself, who will not be sorry to see you going to Nārada and embracing him by his arms! Nobody likes to speak with an ugly faced one; how will you be able to spend your time with him till your death!”

14-29. Nārada said:-- On hearing the mother’s words, the gentle Damayantī, with her mind intently fixed on me, spoke to her mother, very much depressed in her spirits. “O Mother! What good face and beautiful form will avail, who is not in the path of love and who is quite ignorant of amorous feelings and sentiments! And what will the wealth and kingdoms of that unskilled illiterate person avail! The deer, that roam in the forest, getting enchanted by the Nāda (sound) Rasa, give up their lives even to the singers. So they are fortunate. But fie to the persons who are illiterate and void of feelings of love! O Mother! Nārada Risi is well conversant with the science of music with seven Svaras. No other man save Mahā Deva knows this. Living with an illiterate person is courting death at every moment. One devoid of qualifications should be always avoided, by all means, though he be wealthy and of a beautiful form. Fie on the friendship with kings that are illiterate and puffed up with vain arrogance! A well-qualified man, be he even a beggar, is far better to be cultivated friendship with. Leaving other circumstances out of account, even to change words with such a well qualified man, makes one highly delighted. The man is very rare in this world, though he be weak, if he be well versed in the science of music and if he knows Svara, Grāma, Murchchanā and be skilled in eight sentiments of love. [Note:-- Svara - Sadaja, Risabha, Gāndhāra, Madhyama, Panchama, Dhaivata and Nisāda. Grāma - the gradual increase and decrease in Svaras. Murchchana - the rising of sounds, an intonation; a duly regulated rise and fall of sound conducting the air and the harmony through the keys in a pleasing manner; changing the key or passing from one key to another; modulation; melody]. The man versed in the knowledge of Svara leads one to the Heaven of Kailās’a as the rivers Ganges and Sarasvatī by their own merits lead one to Kailās’a. There is not the least doubt in this. He is a Deva in his human body who knows the Svara measure; and he who does not know the Svara and its seven grades is a beast though he has a human form - he who finds no delight when he hears the tune regulated by Murchchanā and the seven Svaras. Do not consider the deer as beasts for they get enchanted when they hear the musical notes. The venomous snakes, though they have no ears, get delighted to hear the enchanting Svara Nāda by their eyes. They even are to be praised; but fie on those human beings who have ears but who do not find any delight when they hear the Nāda! The little children feel intense pleasure to hear the music, but fie, fie on those elders who are void of this musical sentiments! Does not my father know that Nārada is ornamented with many qualifications? Who is there in the three worlds like him in singing the Sāma songs! For this very reason, indeed! I have already selected him as my husband; afterwards, due to a curse, the Muni, the ocean of qualifications, got his face changed into that of a monkey. The Kinnaras, skilled in the science of music, have their faces horse-like; but are they not dear to all? What business have they to get good faces? They enchant the Devas even by their sweet ravishing songs. O Mother! Kindly tell my father that I have already chosen Nārada as my husband. Therefore let him deliver me to his hands, without making any further requests in this matter.”

30-40. Nārada said:-- On hearing the words of her daughter Damayantī, that unblameable pure queen knowing her attachment deep towards me, spoke to the King thus:-- “O King! Now celebrate in an auspicious day and on an auspicious moment the auspicious marriage of Damayantī; the daughter has said that she has already selected Nārada as her bridegroom and it cannot be other-wise.” Thus prompted by the queen, the King S’anjaya performed the marriage ceremony of her daughter in accordance with due rites and customs and in an exceedingly becoming manner. O Risi! Thus I entered into the married life and remained there though my heart constantly burned with the thought of my monkey-face. Whenever the princess used to come to me for my service, I used to get tormented with the remembrance of my monkey-face; but her face beamed with gladness whenever she saw me; never she became sorry nor dejected, even for a moment, to see my face monkey-like. Thus time passed on. One day the Muni Parvata suddenly came there, after making his sojourn to many places of pilgrimages. I showed him a great respect and gladly loved him and greeted him duly; he got himself seated in an excellent Āsana and became very sorry to see me. I am his uncle and have entered into a married life; my face has become monkey-like. Therefore I am very much depressed in spirits and worried with the sad thought and has become lean and thin. Seeing this he was overwhelmed with pity. He then said:-- “O Muni! The curse that I cast on you before out of my anger, I now withdraw. Hear. O Maharsi! Let your face be by my merits, again as good as it was before; I now feel pity for the daughter of the King.”

41-52. Hearing thus, my heart also became gentle and instantly with a view to free him of my curse, I said:-- “Let your journey to the Heavens be re-established. I now make this special favour on you as regards my curse on you before.” O Dvaipāyana! At his word, before our sight, my face became exceedingly handsome as it was before. The princess Damayantī became very glad and instantly she went to the mother and said:-- “O Mother! At the word of Parvata, the great Muni, the curse of your son-in-law has been removed and his face has become handsome as before and the lustre of his body has also increased.” The queen was very much filled with ecstasy and joy at Damayantī’s words and went hurriedly and informed the King. The King S’anjaya gladly went at once to see the Muni. The great King became very glad and gave lots of wealth, gems and jewels to me and my nephew Parvata as a dowry. O Dvaipāyana! Thus I have described to you my old story how I felt the strong influence of Māyā. O Fortunate One! Owing to the illusory nature of the Gunas, like a magic, no embodied being in this world could have been happy before, or he is happy now or he will be happy hereafter. Lust, anger, greed, jealousy, attachment, egoism, and vanity, each one of these is very powerful; nobody is able to conquer these. O Muni! The three Gunas Sāttva, Rājas and Tāmas are the entire causes of the coming into this bodily existence of every being. O Dvaipāyana! Once I was passing with Bhagavān Visnu, laughing and joking, making merriments through a forest, when suddenly I was transformed into a woman. Next I became the wife of a king enchanted by Māyā, I remained in his house and gave birth to many children.

53-56. Vyāsa said:-- O Devarsi! A great doubt has now arisen in my mind at your word. O Muni! You are very wise; how then did you get womanhood; how again did you regain your manhood? Who was the king at whose house you stayed and how did you give birth to children; describe fully and satisfy my curiosity. Describe to me, now, the nature of Māyā, extremely wonderful, by which this entire universe, moving and non-moving, all are enchanted. O Muni! Though I have heard your nectar-like words, capable to remove all the doubts, embodying the essence of all the S’āstras, yet I am not fully satiated.

Here ends the Twenty-seventh Chapter of the Sixth Book on the marriage of Nārada and his face getting transformed into that of a monkey in S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XXVIII
On Nārada’s getting the feminine form

1-11. Nārada said:-- O Thou whose only wealth consists in asceticism! I am now describing to you all those good stories; hear attentively. O Muni! This Māyā and Her Power are incomprehensible even by those who are the foremost amongst the Yogins. This whole Universe, moving and non-moving, from Brahmā to the blade of grass, is enchanted by that Unborn and Incomprehensible Māyā; therefore no one can escape from the hands of that Māyā. One day I wanted to see Hari, of wonderful deeds, and went out with lute in my hand from Satyaloka, to the lovely S’veta Dvīpa (the residence of Visnu) singing the beautiful Sāma hymns in tune with the seven Svaras. I saw there Gadādhara, the Deva of the Devas, with four arms holding disc in one of his hands. He resembled a newly-formed rain-cloud of S’yāma colour. He was illumined with the lustre of the Kaustubha jewel in his breast. He was wearing an yellow apparel. His head was beautified with a lustrous crown. Thus the Bhagavān Nārāyana was playing in amorous movements with the daughter of the ocean, fully capable to give one delight and enjoyment. Seeing me, the lovely Devī Kamalā, dear to Vāsudeva, full of youth and beauty, decorated with ornaments, endowed with all auspicious signs, superior to all the women, went away at once (to another room) from the presence of Janārdana. The breast of Laksmī Devī was becoming visible even through the cloth thrown over it; therefore she went hurriedly to the inner compartment. Seeing this I asked Janārdana, the Deva of the Devas, the Lord of the worlds, and holding a garland of forest grown flowers thus:-- “O Bhagavān! O Slayer of Mura! O Padmanābha! Why has Kamalā Devī, the Mother of all the Lokas, on seeing me coming here, gone out of Your presence. O Lord of the worlds! I am not a rogue nor a cheat; I have conquered my passions and am become an ascetic; I have conquered even Māyā. Therefore O Deva! What is the cause of the departure of the Kamalā Devī from here? Kindly explain this to me.”

12-20. Nārada said:-- O Dvaipāyana! Hearing my words, expressive of my pride, Janārdana smiled and spoke to me in words sweet like the sound of a lute:-- “O Nārada! The rule in such cases is this:-- The wife of any man whatsoever ought not to stay before any other male outsider than her husband. O Nārada! It is very hard to conquer Māyā; even those, who by Prānāyāma have conquered their Prāna Vāyu, their organs of senses and their food, even those Sāmkhya Yogins and the Devas are not able to conquer Māyā. The words that you have just now uttered that you have conquered Māyā are not fit to come out of your mouth; for by your knowledge of music, it seems that you are enchanted with the sounds of the music. Brahmā, I, S’iva, and the other Munis, none of us has been able as yet to conquer that Unborn Māyā; how, then, can it be possible that you or any other man can conquer that Māyā! Any embodied being, be he a Deva, a human being, or a bird, no one is able to conquer that Māyā Unborn. Whoever is endowed with the three Gunas, be he a knower of the Vedas, or a Yogin, or conqueror of his passions, or all knowing, is not able to conquer Māyā. The Great Time (Kāla) though formless, is one form of Māyā and fashions this universe. All the Jīvas are subservient to this Kāla, be he a good literary person, or of a mediocre nature, or an illiterate brute. This Kāla sometimes makes even a religious man that knows Dharma confounded and deluded; so you know the nature of Māyā is very incomprehensible and Her ways mysterious.” (Note: This Kāla is of the fourth dimension, time and space.)

21-23. O Dvaipāyana! Thus saying, Visnu stopped. I was greatly astonished and asked that Eternal Vāsudeva, the Deva of the Devas, the Lord of the World, “O Lord of Ramā! What is the form of Māyā? How is She? What is the measure of Her strength? Where She resides? Whose substratum is She? Kindly tell these to me. O Preserver of the Universe! I am greatly desirous to see Māyā; Shew Her to me quickly. O Lord of Ramā! I am very eager to know Māyā. Be graciously pleased to describe tome the glory of Māyā.”

24-36. Visnu said:-- Māyā resides everywhere throughout this whole Universe; Her nature consists of the three Gunas; She is the substratum of all; She is omniscient, and acknowledged by all; invisible, and of diverse forms. O Nārada! If you want to see Māyā, then come quickly and mount with me on Garuda; we both will go elsewhere and I will shew you that Māyā, invincible by those who have not conquered themselves. O Son of Brahmā! Don’t be depressed when you see Māyā. Thus saying, Janārdana Hari remembered Garuda and instantly he came to Hari. Janārdana mounted on him and gladly made me also get up on his back and took me with Him. In a moment Garuda, went, at his command, with the speed of wind to the forest where the Bhagavān desired to go. Mounting on Garuda we passed and saw on our way beautiful forests, nice lakes, rivers, towns, villages, huts of cultivators, towns close to the mountains, huts for cow-keepers in cowsheds, the beautiful hermitages of the Munis, lovely Jhils, tanks and lakes beautified with big lotuses, flocks of ewes, packs of wild boars, etc., till, at last, we came to a place close to Kanauj. I saw there a beautiful divine tank; nice lotuses blossomed there, spreading their sweet fragrance all around; the bees were making lovely humming noise and ravishing away the minds of men; various flowers, lilies, etc., were beautifying the place; Geese, Kārandavas, and Chakravākas and other acquatic fowls were playing with their cackling noise, the water was very sweet like milk; the tank was defying, as it were the ocean. Seeing such a wonderful tank, the Bhagavān told me:-- “O Nārada! See, how beautiful is this deep tank with its clear waters, and adorned all over with lotuses! The sweet voiced flamingoes are roaming on the lake making lovely sounds!

37-54. We will bathe in this tank and then go to the city Kanauj. Thus saying, He made me descend quickly from Garuda and He himself also got down. Then the Bhagavān smilingly caught hold of my fore-finger and repeatedly praising the glory of the tank took me to its bank. We rested a while on the cool umbrageous beautiful bank when S’rī Bhagavān said:-- “O Muni! Better bathe you first in this tank; next I will bathe in this very holy pool of water. O Nārada! Look! Look! How clear crystal-like is the water of this pool like the heart of a saint; see how it smells also fragrantly in contact with the lotuses on it.” When the Bhagavān spoke thus to me; I kept my lute and deer skin aside and gladly went to the edge of the tank. Washing then my hands and feet I tied my hair lock and, taking Kus’a grass, I performed my Āchaman and, purifying myself, began to bathe myself in that tank. While I was bathing, Hari was looking at me; by the time I took a dip, I saw that I quitted my male form and got a beautiful female form. Hari took away, then, my deer skin and lute and mounting on Garuda went away in a moment to His own residence. Getting the female form and decorated with excellent ornaments, my memory of my previous male form vanished at once; I forgot all about my famous lute and forgot also Jagannātha, the Deva of the Devas. I then came out of the tank in that enchanting woman form, saw the pool of water filled with clear limpid water and adorned with lotuses. Seeing that, I began to think:-- “What is this?” and I became very much astonished. While I was thus meditating in my woman form, a king, named Tāladhvaja, came there, all on a sudden, on a chariot, accompanied by numerous elephants and horses. The King looked like a second Cupid; he was decorated with various ornaments on his various limbs; he was just entering into his youth and he looked very enchanting. The King saw me at once and looking at me decked with divine ornaments and my moon-like face, was greatly astonished and asked me:-- “O Kalyāni! Who are you? Are you the daughter of a man or of a Nāga (serpent) or of a Gandharva or of a Deva? I see you are now in your youth; why are you alone here? O Lovely-eyed!

Has any fortunate person married you? Or are you still unmarried? Speak all these truly to me. O Fair-haired One! What are you looking at in this tank? O One enchanting, as it were, like the Cupid! What is your desire? Say, O Slanting-eyed! My mind is ravished to hear your cuckoo-like voice. O One of thin waist! Choose me as your husband and enjoy various excellent things as you like.”

Here ends the Twenty-eighth Chapter of the Sixth Book on Nārada’s getting the feminine form in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XXIX
On the Nārada’s getting again his male form

1-11. Nārada said:-- O Dvaipāyana! When the King Tāladhvaja asked me thus, I thought over earnestly and said thus:-- “I do not know whose daughter I am; nor do I know quite certainly where are my father and mother; one man placed me here on this tank and has gone away, whither I do not know. O King! I am now an helpless orphan; what shall I do now? Where to go? What to do by which I can have my welfare? I am all the while thinking on these. O King! The Destiny is powerful; I have not the least control over it; you know Dharma and you are a King. Do now as you like. O King! Do nourish me; I have no father, no mother, nor any acquaintances and friends; there is no place for me also to stand on; therefore I am now your dependent.” When I spoke thus, the King looked at my face and became love-stricken for me; he then told his attendants to bring an excellent rectangular and spacious palanquin to be carried on four men’s shoulders, gilt and adorned with jewels and pearls, where soft sheets were spread inside and covered all over with silken cloths. Instantly the servants went away and brought for me a beautiful palanquin. I got on it to serve the best wishes of the King. The King also gladly took me home. In an auspicious day and in an auspicious moment he married me in accordance with due rites and ceremonies in the presence of the Holy Fire.

12. I became dearer to him than even his own life and the King, with great fondness, kept my name as Saubhāgya Sundarī.

13-20. The King then began to sport with me amorously according to the rules of the Kāma S’āstra in various ways and with great enjoyments and pleasures. He then left all his kingly duties and state affairs and he began to remain day and night with me deeply immersed in amorous sports; so much his mind was merged in me in these plays that he could not notice the long time that passed away in the interval. He used to drink the Vārunī wine and, forsaking all the state affairs, began to enjoy me in nice gardens, beautiful lakes, lovely palaces, beautified houses, excellent mountains and enviable forests and became completely subservient to me. O Dvaipāyana! Being incessantly engaged with the King in amorous sports and remaining obedient to him, my previous body, male ideas, or the birth of Muni, nothing whatsoever came in my memory. I remained always attached to him, being obedient to him with a view to be happy and I constantly thought over “that this King is very much attached to me, I am his dearest wife to all others; always he thinks of me, I am his chief consort, capable to give him enjoyment.” My mind became entirely his and I completely forgot the eternal Brahmajñān and the knowledge of the Dharma S’āstras.

21-31. O Muni! Thus engaged in various amorous sports, twelve years passed away as if a moment and I could not perceive that. Then I became pregnant; and the King became very glad and performed all the ceremonies pertaining to my impregnation and holding of the child in my womb. In order to satisfy me, the King used to ask me always what things I liked; I used to be very much abashed; seeing this, the King used to be still more glad. Ten months thus passed away and in an auspicious Lagna and when the asterism was favourably strong, I gave birth to a son; the King became very glad and great festivities were held on the birth ceremony of the child. O Dvaipāyana! When the period of the birth-impurity was over, the King saw the face of the child and was greatly delighted; I then became the dearest wife of the King. Two years after again I became impregnated; the second auspicious son was born. The King gave the name Sudhanvā to the second son and on the authority of the Brāhmins, kept the name of the eldest son as Vīravarmā. Thus I gave birth to twelve sons, in due course of time, to the King’s great liking; and I was engaged in rearing up those children and thus I remained enchanted. Again in due course, I gave birth to eight sons; thus my household was filled with happiness. The King performed the marriage ceremonies of all those children duly and befittingly; and our family became very large with sons and their wives.

32-52. Then I had some grandsons and they increased my attachment and the consequent delusion with their all sorts of playful sports. Sometimes I felt happy and prosperous and sometimes I felt pain and sorrow when my sons fell ill. Then my body and mind became very much troubled with sorrows. Again the quarrels amongst my sons and my daughters-in-law, brought terrible pain and remorse in my mind. O Best of Munis! Thus I was greatly immersed in the terrible ocean of these imaginary thoughts, sometimes happy and sometimes painful, and I forgot my previous knowledge and the knowledge of the S’āstras. I was merged in the thought of myself being a woman and lost myself entirely in doing the household affairs. I began to think “that I have so many daughters-in-law; so many powerful sons of mine are playing together in my house; Oh! I am fortunate and full of merits amongst women” and thus my egoistic pride increased. Not for a moment even occurred the thought that I had been Nārada; the Bhagavān had deceived me by His Māyā. O Krisna Dvaipāyana! I was deluded by Māyā and passed away my time in the thought “that I am the king’s wife, chaste and of good conduct following good Āchāra; I have so many sons and grandsons; I am blessed in this Samsāra and that I am so happy and prosperous.” One powerful king of a distant country turned out an inveterate enemy of my husband and came to the city of Kanauj to fight with my husband, accompanied by chariots, and elephants and the fourfold army. That enemy besieged the city with his army; my sons and grandsons went out and fought valiantly with him but owing to the great Destiny, the enemies killed all my sons. The King retreated and returned to his palace. Next I heard that powerful King killed all my sons and grandsons and had gone back to his country with his army. I then hurriedly went to the battlefield, crying loudly. O Long-lived One! Seeing my sons and grandsons lying on the ground, in that horrible and distressed state, I became merged in the ocean of sorrows and lamented and wept loudly and wildly, “O my Sons! Where have you gone leaving me thus? Alas! The pernicious Fate is very dominant, and very painsgiving and indomitable. It has killed me today.” By this time, the Bhagavān Madhusûdana came to me there in the garb of a beautiful aged Brāhmin. His dress was sacred and lovely; it seemed he was versed in the Vedas. Seeing me weeping distressedly in the battlefield he said:-- “O Devī! O cuckoo-voiced One! It seems you are the mistress of a prosperous house and you have got husband and sons! O thin-bodied One! Why are you thus lamenting and feeling yourself distressed! All this is simply illusion caused by Moha; think; who are you? whose sons are these? Now think of your best hereafter; Don’t weep, get up and be comfortable, O Good-eyed one!

53-54. O Devī! To shew respect to your sons, etc., gone to the other worlds, offer them water and Til. The friends of the deceased ought to take their bath in a place of pilgrimage; never they should bathe in their houses. Know this as ordained by Dharma.

55-66. Nārada said:-- O Dvaipāyan! When the old Brāhmin thus addressed me, I and the King and other friends got up. The Bhagavān Madhusûdana causing this creation, in the form of a Brāhmana, led the way and I followed him quickly to that sacred place of pilgrimage. The Visnu Bhagavān, the Lord Janārdana Hari, in the form of a Brāhmin, kindly took me to the tank named Pumtīrtha (male tīrtha) and said:-- “O One going like an elephant! Better take your bath in this tank; forego your sorrows that are of no use; now the time has arrived to offer water to your sons. Better think that you had millions of sons born to you in your previous births and for that your millions of sons and daughters lost their lives; you had millions of fathers, husbands, and brothers and you lost them again; O Devī! Now tell me for whom you will now grieve? All these, then, are merely mental phenomena; this world is full of delusion, false like a mirage and dream-like; the embodied souls, simply get pains and sorrows and nothing else.” Nārada said:-- On hearing his words, I went to bathe in that Pumtīrtha, as ordered by him. Taking a dip, I found that, in an instant, I became a man; the Bhagavān Hari, in his own proper form, was standing on the edge with a lute in his hand. O Brāhmin! When getting out of the water, I came to the bank and saw the lotus-eyed Krisna, pure consciousness then flashed in my heart. Then I thought “that I am Nārada; I have come to this place and being deluded by the Māyā of Hari, I got the female form.” When I was thinking thus, Hari exclaimed, “O Nārada! Get up; what are you doing, standing in the water?” I was astonished; and, recollecting my feminine nature, very severe indeed, began to think why I was again transformed into a male form.

Here ends the Twenty-ninth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the Nārada’s getting again his male form in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XXX
On the glory of Mahā Māyā

1-14. Nārada said:-- O Best of Munis! The King was greatly astonished to see me dip in the tank in a female figure and get up from the tank in a male figure and thought, “Where is my dearest wife? And how is this Nārada Muni suddenly come here!” The King, not seeing his wife, lamented very much and cried frequently, “O my dear Wife! Where have you gone, leaving me here thus. Without you, O One of spacious hips! My life, palace and kingdom, all, are quite useless. O Lotus-eyed one! What shall I do? O Smiling One! Why is not my life getting out of my body, suffering thus from thy separation? Without you, my sentiment of love has left me for ever. O Large-eyed One! Now I am lamenting for you. O Dear! Better give me your sweet reply; the love that you expressed at our first union, where has it gone now? O One with good eyebrows! Are you sunk in the water and have you given up your life? Or are you devoured by fishes or crocodiles? Or are you carried away by Varuna, the Deva of the waters, to my great misfortune? O One of beautiful limbs! You are blessed, as you have gone away with your sons; O sweet-speaking One! Your affection for them was not artificial. Is it right for you to go up to the Heavens, attached by affection for your sons, leaving me your distressed husband alone, thus weeping for your separation? O Dear! I have lost both, you and my sons; yet death is not carrying me away; O! How hard is my lot! What to do? Where to go? Rāma is not now in this world. He knew what was the pain caused by the separation from one’s dearest wife. Oh! The cruel Fate has ordained very unwisely with great inconsistency the periods of parting from one another at different periods; when their minds and all other things are exactly the same in all circumstances of pleasure and pain. The practice of Satī (burning with one’s deceased husband), as ordained by the Munis, is certainly for the good of the chaste women; but it would have been good no doubt, were there such practices allowed for the men to burn themselves with their deceased wives.” Bhagavān Hari then spoke to the lamenting King in reasonable words and consoled him thus:-- “O King! Why are you thus troubling yourself with pain and sorrow? Where has gone your dearest wife? Have you not heard anything of S’āstras? or Have you not taken any shelter of any wise man!

15-27. Who was your wife? Who are you? Of what nature was your union and disunion and where did it take place? The union of wives and sons in this S’amsāra is momentary like the meetings of persons on boats, while crossing a river. O King! Now go home, there is no use in your weeping thus in vain; the union and disunion of men are always under the control of Fate, the Daiva; therefore the wise should not lament for them. O King! Your union with the woman took place here; and now you have lost that beautiful, thin-bodied, large-eyed woman here also. Her father and mother you have not seen; you have got her like what is heard in the story of the crow and the Tāl fruit; as you got her wonderfully, so you have lost her wonderfully. O King! Do not grieve; Time cannot be ruled over; go home and enjoy yourself subservient to Time. That beautiful woman has gone away in the manner she came to you; you ought to do your stately affairs in the way as you used to do before as the ruler of all. O King! Consider that if you weep day and night, that women will never return; why then are you giving vent to your sorrows in vain? Go now and have recourse to the path of the Yoga and thus while away your time. The enjoyable things come in course of time and they go away again in due course; therefore in this world of no gain whatsoever, the wise should never lament. Continuous pleasure or continuous pain does not always take place; pleasure and pain are never steady; they rotate always like a rotary instrument. Therefore, O King! Make your mind calm and quiet and rule happily your kingdom; or make over the charge of the kingdom to your sons and retire to the forest. This human body is seldom obtained; it is frail; therefore getting that body it is advisable to practise the realisation of the Supreme. O King! This organ of generation and this tongue reside also with the beasts, the peculiarity of human body is that knowledge can be realised in it; not in any other inferior births. Therefore leave your home, leave your sorrows for your wife; all this is the Māyā of Bhagavān; by Her the world is deluded.”

28-37. Nārada said:-- Bhagavān Hari speaking thus, the King bowed down to Him, the Deva of the Devas and finishing the bathing duties returned to his home. He then became possessed of dispassion and discrimination and making over the charge of his kingdom to his grandsons retired to the forest and realised the Supreme Knowledge. When the King went away, the Bhagavān began to laugh and laugh, seeing me again and again. I then told him, “O Deva! You have deceived me. I now come to know how great is the power of Māyā. O Janārdana! Now I remember all that I did in my feminine form. Tell me, O Hari! O Deva of the Devas! How I lost my previous consciousness, when I got down into the tank and bathed in it. O Lord of the world! Why was I enchanted, when I got the female form and when I got the King as my husband like S’achī’s getting Indra. The same mind I had; the old Jivātmā was there and the previous subtle body was there; how, then, I lost their memories? O Lord! Give out the cause of it and clear my doubts; a great doubt has arisen in my mind. Many enjoyments I had in my female form, drinking liquor and other prohibited things I tasted; O Slayer of Madhu! What is the cause of all these? I could not know then that I was Nārada, as I now recognise clearly what I was in and what I did in my female form. Say the Why of all these things.”

38-53. Visnu said:-- “Know, O Intelligent Nārada! That all this is merely the Pastime of Māyā. There are many states going on in the bodies of all the living beings. The embodied beings have got their waking, dream, deep sleep and Tûriya (beyond all the three above-mentioned) states; then why you doubt that when there is another body, there would be also the change in the states? When a man sleeps, he knows not anything, he does not hear anything; but when he gets awake, he again comes to know everything completely. The Chitta gets itself moved by sleep; then mind gets different states by dreams and there arises a variety of feelings. A mad elephant is coming to kill me, and I am not able to fly away. What to do? Where to go? There is no place where I can quickly go; thus, in dreams, there arise different mental states. Sometimes we see in dreams that our departed grandfathers are come in our houses. I am seeing them, talking with them and I am dining with them. Whatever pain and pleasure are felt in dreams, when they awake, they know of what happened in their dreams and can also describe in details, recollecting what had then happened. O Nārada! Know the power of Māyā incomprehensible as the things seen in dreams cannot be certainly known that all those are false. O Muni! Neither I, nor S’ambhu, nor Brahmā can measure the power wielded by Māyā and Her three Gunas, very hard to fathom. How, then, can any ordinary mortal know them! Therefore, O Nārada! None is able to fathom the Māyā. This world, moving and non-moving, is fashioned out of the triple Gunas of the Māyā; nothing whatsoever can exist without them. The predominant Guna in Me is Sāttva; but Rājas and Tāmas exist in me; being the Lord of this world, I cannot override the three Gunas. So your father, Brahmā, is predominant in Rājo Guna; but Sāttva and Tāmas never leave Him, Our Mahā Deva is predominant in Tāmo Guna, but Sāttva and Rājo are always with him. Therefore, no being can exist as separate from the three Gunas; this point I have settled in S’ruti. Therefore, O Lord of the Munis! Quit this endless Moha for the world, caused by Māyā, and very hard to get over and worship Bhagavatī, Who is of the nature of Brāhman. O Intelligent One! Now you have seen the power of Māyā; and you have enjoyed many things produced by Māyā and you have realised the extremely wonderful nature of Her. Then why do you ask me further on this point?”

Here ends the Thirtieth Chapter of the Sixth Book on the glory of Mahā Māyā in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devi Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

Chapter XXXI
On the glory of Māyā Devi

18-22. O Muni! When my Father learnt the cause of my cares, he smiled and spoke to me in sweet words:-- “O Child! The Devas, the high-souled Munis, the wise ascetics and the Yogis subsisting on air only are not able to conquer this Māyā. O Nārada! The power of Māyā is so very great that I, Visnu and S’ambhu, the Lord of Umā, none are able to know Her power.

That Mahāmāyā is creating, preserving and dissolving this world by Time, Karma, and Nature and other efficient causes. O Child! Know Her to be inconceivable and unapproachable. O Intelligent One! Do not be sorry nor should you be surprised about Māyā’s great strength, for we all are deluded by Her.

23-25. O Dvaipāyan! Thus advised by my Father, my wonder disappeared. I then asked permission of my Father Padma Yoni (Lotus-born) and went out on tour round the sacred places of pilgrimages and on my way, seeing by and by the chief Tīrthas, I have now come here. Therefore, O Muni! Dost thou relinquish your sorrows for the extinction of the Kuru’s family and remain here and pass your time in great joy and happiness. One must bear the fruits of one’s Karma, good or bad; knowing this fully roam at your will wherever you like.

26-40. Vyāsa said:-- O King! Maharsi Nārada thus kindling knowledge in me, went away; I also thought over his words. On the banks of the river Sarasvatī, I composed this Devī Bhāgavat to pass away my time during the excellent period of Sārasvata Kalpa. This Purānam is excellent; it is composed on the authority of the the Vedas; all doubts are removed by it; many nice events are narrated here. Therefore, O King! Not the least doubt should be entertained. As a magician makes the wooden dolls dance in his hands at his will, so this world-enchanting Māyā is making this world, moving and non-moving, dance from Brahmā down to the blades of grass and all human beings. O King! Know Māyā’s triple Gunas to be the cause of this mind consisting of five organs of senses, that follows the Chitta (mind, buddhi and Ahamkāra). Actions arise from the causes thereof; there is no doubt in this; what doubt, then, there can arise that all these creatures of different temperaments will come out of the different Gunas of Māyā. Peaceful, terrible and stupid become the persons in contact with the Mayic Gunas. How, then, can they exist, bereft of them? As the cloth cannot exist without threads, so the embodied beings cannot exist in the world without the triple Gunas of Māyā. There is no doubt in this. As a pot cannot be made without clay, so these bodies, Devas, human or birds, cannot be created without the Gunas. Brahmā, Visnu and S’iva, too, are possessed of those three Gunas and therefore they become sometimes happy and satisfied, sometimes unhappy and dissatisfied and sometimes they become sad and remorseful as they are then under the influence of one Guna or the other. Brahmā happens at times to be full of wisdom and knowledge, his temper peaceful, sweet and pleasant and his soul rapt in Samādhi, when he becomes possessed of Sāttva Guna; again when he is void of Sāttva and filled with Rājo Guna, His temper becomes unpleasant and his appearance gets dark and awful everywhere; and when he becomes grossly Tāmasic, He becomes sorrowful and bereft entirely of intelligence.

41-51. Visnu, when resting in Sāttva, becomes peaceful, sweet-tempered, and full of knowledge; when Rājo Guna preponderates in Him, He becomes void of sweetness and becomes awful to all the beings. Rudra becomes, too, peaceful and pleasant under the Sāttva Guna, awful and void of sweetness under the Rājo Guna, and becomes sad and stupid under the Tāmo Guna. O King! When Brahmā, Visnu, Mahes’vara and the solar and lunar Kings, the fourteen lords of Manvantaras, Manu and others are under the control of the mayic Gunas, what to speak of other ordinary mortals, men and the other Jīvas. The whole world is under the control of Māyā; the Devas, men and all other beings. None should doubt on this point. All the embodied beings labour under the directions of Māyā; never can they work independently. This Māyā is again always residing in the Highest Essence, the Samvit or the Universal Pure Consciousness. Thus Māyā is dependent on the Highest Goddess, Who is of the nature of Samvit, and, stimulated by Her, resides in the hearts of all the Jīvas. Therefore one ought to meditate, worship and bow down before the Bhagavatī, the Creatrix of Māyā and Who is of the nature of Samvit, Pure Existence, Intelligence and Bliss. Thus She becomes gracious and merciful and liberates the Jīvas, giving them Her realisation and drawing together Her own Māyā away from them. This whole cosmos is nothing but Māyā and the Consciousness (Samvit) of the nature of Brāhman is the Lord of Māyā. For this reason that Beautiful One in the triple worlds, the Devī Bhagavatī is known by the name Bhuvanes’varī, the Great Lady of the worlds.

52-60. O King! If the Jīvas can fix their hearts on that Samvit, then Māyā, born of the real and unreal, is quite unable to do any harm to them. No other Deva than the Bhuvanes’varī, of the nature of pure existence, intelligence and bliss is able to remove this Māyā. O King! Darkness cannot destroy darkness; the Sun, Moon, Lightning or Fire can destroy it. Therefore it is highly incumbent on us to worship the Lady of Māyā, the Samvit, the Mother with a cheerful heart to remove the Māyā and Her Gunas. O King! Now I have narrated to you all the events concerning the killing of Vritrāsura that you asked. What more do you want to hear now. O One devoted to vows! I have now described the first half of that Purāna, which describes in detail the glory of S’rī Devī Bhagavatī. This Purāna, the secret of this Mother of the whole Universe, is not to be disclosed indiscriminately to anybody. Those that are peaceful, self-restrained, devoted, and possessed of Bhakti to the Devī, the disciples that are devoted to their Gurus and the eldest son, those are the fit recipients thereof. Whoever reads or hears with greatest devotion this Mahāpurānam, equivalent to the Vedas, fraught with sound proofs and the essence of all talks, becomes, in this world, possessed of great wealth, becomes wise and passes his time in the greatest happiness. There is no doubt in this.

Here ends the Thirty-first Chapter on the Sixth Book on the glory of Māyā in the Mahāpurānam S’rī Mad Devī Bhāgavatam of 18,000 verses by Maharsi Veda Vyāsa.

The Sixth Book Finished

ā,  ī,  û - are read like long a, i, u
s' - is like soft sh or z in another Sanskrit transliteration
s - is like sh or S in another Sanskrit transliteration
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