Harivamsha Purana

by Manmatha Nath Dutt | 1897 | 293,872 words | ISBN-10: 8178542188 | ISBN-13: 9788178542188

This page is entitled “attributes of hari” and represents Chapter 73 of the second book (‘Vishnu Parva’) of the Harivamsa (English translation in Prose). The Harivamsha Purana narrates the lineage and life-story of Krishna (Hari). Although not officially mentioned in the list of Puranas, this book includes topics such as geology, creation theory, time (manvantaras), ancient historical legends and accounts of royal dynasties.

Chapter 73 - Attributes of Hari

1. Vaishampayana said:—On coming to the beautiful city of Dvarka, that foremost of all sages, Narada, saw that foremost of beings, that subduer of his foes, Narayana

2. comfortably seated with Satyabhama in his own mansion, and appearing highly beautiful in consequence of his charming form that transcended all energies.

3. He saw the high-souled Keshava of firm vows engrossed in that thought (i.e., of the Parijata), and only gratifying the lovely Satyabhama with empty words.

4. On seeing Narada, the divine Adhokshaja rose (from his seat) and worshipped him with prescribed ceremonies.

5. After Narada had been comfortably seated, having cast off the fatigue (of the journey) the slayer of Madhu smilingly questioned him on the subject of the Parijata tree.

6. Thereupon, O Janamejaya, that sage, possessed of ascetic merit, told the younger brother of Indra all his words in full details.

7. Having heard all those words from Narada, Krishna spoke to him thus: "Even to-morrow shall I go to the region of the celestials, O foremost of all virtuous sages".

8. Having spoken this much only Hari entered into the waters of the ocean, accompanied by Narada; and there in secret he again addressed him thus:—"

9. Going to-day to the residence of Mahendra, and offering him my best regards, do you, O sage, tell that foremost of immortals, the high-souled Indra, these my very words. '

10. O Sakra, O lord I know me determined as regards the fetching down of the Parijata here; and if a fight does actually take place, you shalt not be able to stand before me (even for a moment.)'".

11. Thus spoken to by Krishna, Narada once more went to the celestial region and spoke to the lord of the gods all the words of Krishna of immeasurable energy.

12. Thereupon that slayer of Vala, Sakra spoke every thing to Vrihaspati;on hearing from him, O delighter of the Karus, Vrihaspati thus spoke. "

13. O fie! This nasty affair has originated only because I was absent from the abode of Brahma. This will create a dissension.

14. For what reason, O lord of the universe, hast you commenced this business, without having previously told me of it?

15. Or, O slayer of Vritra, the world is led to act by fate born out of previous actions;and it is beyond the power of any body to prevent it.

16. A hasty commencement of actions is not commendable;and therefore this business, hastily begun as it is, will surely give us dishonor and defeat".

17. Thereupon Mahendra spoke these words to the high-souled Vrihaspati:—"It now behoves you to say what should be done under the present circumstances."

18. Thereupon after reflecting for a while with his countenance cast down, the virtuous-minded Vrihaspati, of liberal understanding, the knower of all things in the past and the future, thus replied to him. "

19. Now, try your best to fight Janarddana, with the help of your son (Jayanta). O Sakra, I shall afterwards do what shall be more just and politic".

20. Having thus spoken, Vrihaspati went into the milky ocean, and there he said every thing to the high-souled Kashyapa.

21. Having heard that (i.e., the affair of the Parijata,) from Vrihaspati, Kashyapa was enraged and thus spoke to him. "That this was sure to have taken place, there was not the slightest doubt.

22. He, of hundred Sacrifices, was inflamed with a lustful desire towards the worthy wife of the mighty sage Devasoma;the evil of the course he followed has now undertaken him.

23. For the atonement of that sin, I have, O sage, commenced this living in water. But still that heinous sin has now undertaken him.

24. O you of ascetic merit, I, with Aditi, shall go there, mediations and fate favouring, and shall prevent them both (from splitting each other’s blood)."

25. Thereafter the virtuous-souled Vrihaspati thus spoke to the son of Marica. "If the time comes, you shalt go in good time".

26. Having said "Very well", Kashyapa dismissed Vrihaspati; thereafter he went to worship the god Rudra, that lord of all beings.

27. There the intelligent and illustrious Kashyapa, desirous of obtaining a boon, worshipped, in company with Aditi, the peaceful and high-souled god, having the bull for his emblem.

28. Thereafter that son of Marichi, Kashyapa, in order to please the god Ishana, that preceptor of the universe, began to eulogise him in Vedic as well as in self-composed hymns.

29. Kashyapa said:"—To him whose foot-falls are mighty,[1] who is the nascent cause of the universe, who is the Supreme, who is the creator of the world (potent cause), who is attained only through virtue (Dharma), who is the Lord of grace (i.e., metes out grace to them who worship and adore him), who is Self-controlled and endued with divine energy—I bow down to that illustrious lord of the universe.

30. He is the lord of the celestials. He is the destroyer of sin. Through his instrumentality the universe extends, He being the cause nascent and potential. The image of His intelligence, the sacred waters hold.[2] I seek refuge with the Supreme ruler of the universe.

31. He, who under the semblance of a self-controlled ascetic, slew the uncontrolled who were ignorant of the doctrines of the Vedanta and tried to do away with the friendly qualities, He, whose semblance is delightful, and whose origin is sacred, I seek the protection of that lord of the universe with my (bent) head.

32. That great and undisputed Master of the universe, who takes under his benign protection the advanced (i.e., that is morally and religiously) section of worldly beings, He who is the Light of all lights. He, who is identified with the semblance of Brahma known by the designation of Sukrita—is immutable and indomitable; that bestower of boons on those sages who perform penances living upon the juice of the Soma plant and the beams of the moon; may that Being nourish me with his Eternal Energy!

33. He who is demonstrated in the Atharva Veda; He whose heads[3] are beautiful, He who is the origin of the beings, who is accomplished, heroic, and destroyer of the Danavas; He who in sacrifices is the sanctified sacrificial burnt offering;—I do seek the refuge of that Divine Being, the Lord of the universe.

34. He in whom this illusory universal net is woven; He who is the universe and its soul; He who discovers happiness for his votaries and travels in a vehicle that soars high in the heavens; may that Lord of the universe be ever graciously pleased with me, (or be the source of constant happiness to me).

35. I do bow down to the furious Mahadeva who wanders in our hearts, who is Absolute Intelligence whose branches (the Vedas that have come out of Him) are all beautiful, who is the highly powerful leader of virtue, worshipful, thousand-eyed, distributer of fruits of actions done in a hundred different ways, and who is the creator of the worlds.

36. He that is pure (unconsorted) attainable through Yoga, praised in the Vedas, beyond the reach of sin, the cause of destruction, the source of the world’s weal and woe, the Lord of all creation, the upholder of the burden of the universe, the master of the senses, and the resort of the destructive agencies (such as time, &c.,) I do approach, with a bent head, that god whose forehead is beautified with a crescent.

37. He who wields the trident, who gives fruition (of acts) soon, who reduces the influence of the evil passions and increases such qualities as quietude, &c., who is identical with such pious acts as sacrifices, &c., who is that quality of religious merit through which sins dwindle away soon, who is the recipient of the fruits of religious merit consequent on deeds performed with sanctity and the principle of goodness, who is the real essence of all, and who has taken the vow (of purity)—I do seek protection from him.

38. He who is infinite in energy, who is the upholder of all actions, the Primary Being, who is (unlike other gods) free from sacrificial modes, and is endowed with knowledge—He who is the cause of the commencement of sacrifices by sacrificial priests, the eater of sacrificial Havis;who is the first-born in the universe, and the eldest of creation, and who is like a Brahmana among the pious—I do seek his refuge.

39. He who transcends the Gunas (the elements of creation), who is like Vishnu the son of Prisni, who transcends the illusory creation—and agitates the universe through his beatitude, whose semblance is charming; who is of pure self, who is also—but intelligence, who practises Maya in dealing with the wicked—I bow down to him.

40. I bow down to Him who is the Omkara of half syllables of the Yogis who is free from harmful acts and the identity of Virtue, who is firm in vow, and in (handing) the bow, who is the act of throwing, who is heroic, accomplished in bowmanship, beyond the reach of weapons and the Lord of the living creation, and its destroyer.

41. He who is without a second (sole matchless) the friend of all, the past and the future, the discoverer of Havi, (sacrificial burnt offerings), in the shape of fire, the destroyer of all passions as lust, &c., the slayer of Rakshasas, who is undivisible, and the divider,—may that illustrious God protect me.

42. That one Lord of the worlds, who though one—enters into every thing of the universe, that one who gave the vital breaths (Maruts) their life, breath, (i.e., he who is the life of life), he who, out of his innate harmlessness, is ever attended upon by friendliness and amiability, may that god of good actions lead me to-day to blessings and happiness.

43. He, who in the shape of Brahma, created the Satyaloka together with the essence of goodness, and the entire illusory universe, who is all-cognizant and the knower of Brahma and is endowed with six excellences, whose semblance is numerous, in his different enemy-destroying incarnations, may that god protect me!

44. He who is the revealer of the supersensuous and the sensuous objects, who is increate and self-sufficient, who is entire and undivided who is in contact with the sense-objects, the granter of prosperities, the giver of life, the wearer of deer-skin, who is Supreme Ecstacy, the life of the blowing winds, the receptacle of conception, the creator of happiness—may that Lord bless me accompanied by his two wives.

45. He who posseses three eyes, who gives nourishment, who, to inculcate religion to the twice-born ones, accords boons to the sacrificers, He who is the most excellent of the excellent the winner of victory in battles, the Lord, the God of the gods,—I resort to the protection of that Rudra.

46. He that is the mouth of the gods in the shape of fire, the destroyer of the evil doers, who is the Soma sacrifice, the annihilator of the tree of Mundane Existence, the witness of all the actions, the source of dissolution of all things,—I seek refuge with that Lord of Beings, Rudra, the knower of the Gunas and their repository.

47. He who is prideless, the performer of sacrifices, the beginning, the middle and the end of the worlds, the condition of peace and unification,—he who is sung in the sacrifices prescribed in the Vedas as numerous different gods, and He who is the regulator even of the celestial world, I seek refuge with that Rudra.

48. He who is the wearer of the elephant-skin, the performer of vows and observances, who is decorated with a zone, who is easily pleasable, the controller of anger free from sin, ever-existent, and the Supreme Soul, who is immanent in Nature, the wearer of matted locks, I bow, down to that Lord, the adorable of the adorable.

49. The god of gods, the holy of holies, the sacrifice of sacrifices, the greatest of the great, He of hundred (infinite) semblances, the Master of all the masters of the senses, (i.e., eye of eyes, ear of ears, &c.,) the ever-praised one, I seek refuge with him..

50. He who is the wonder of all hearts, the Purusha of mysterious appellation, the self-manifest Pranava, who is revealed even in the absence of such revealing agencies as light and the eyes, &c., and He, who is the potent cause of the divine image known as Jiva, I bow down to that god endued with the qualities and the repository of all bliss.

51. He who is the producer of the both (matter and mind) but is himself unproduced, (or He from whom matter and mind have been born but who did not produce them, He transcending all causes) who is subtle (inconceivable) and simultaneously the same with and different from all created beings (unified and differentiated) who is self-existent, the place of dissolution of existence, the benign Giver who is sweetness, ecstacy and beatitude, may He protect me.

52. He who is near to every body, and revealed to those who are possessed of Sadhana, who is the bestower of such knowledge as 'I am absolute', to those who reverentially believe in Him, the presiding Deity of the great and the good actions, He who is fulfiller of the desires and the fulfillment of the Six Excellences, may that Lord protect me.

53. He who is destroyer of the mental and physical sources of pain, the efficient as well as the material cause, the evolver (of the passions) may that God of gods, that one possessed of Supreme Energy, cut off the cause of pain of me and of the pious, wielding his potent weapons. By whom in the days of yore the guileful Danavas who used to give much pain to the gods, were cut with dreadful arrows and eradicated as so many thorns, may that upholder of the water of the universe, that Supreme Lord, protect me! (54)

55. "The destroyer with whom, when he was desirous of abolishing the portion of the sacrificial offerings of the God, the sacrificer Daksha sought refuge,—may that Lord of sacrifices, the beginning and the end of all things, the destroyer of Daksha’s sacrifice—the all-intelligent one, protect me.

56. He that creates and annihilates the world, that mystery of mysteries, that one possessed of primary notions, who although different from all things in the shape of Vishnu is present in the sacrifices and is the principal resort of the Six Excellences, may that God Narayana, protect my son Indra.

57. The three conditions of the Gunas, viz., creation, existence, and annihilation, eternally live in him, the principle of Excellence (Sattva) proceeds from his nature; He is the protector of the protectors of the world, the destroyer of the wicked doers, in the shape of Rudra, the Beginning of the universe and the annihilator of the oppressors of the world.

58. He whose very small part is Vishnu of Infinite Forms, He, into whose residence Brahma and his sons and the Brahmanas headed by Marichi although born from him, are incapable of entering, may that protector of the pious, together with the goddess Uma be pleased with me.

59. He, from whom the elements[4] have sprung, who maintains them, and in whom they become merged (in the form of destruction) He, that is the power of retention, the prosperity, and the revelation of mysteries to that high-souled person who devoutly seeks the Supreme Being—surely that God will put an end to all our miseries. The whole male creation, of the universe, is identical with the three-eyed God, and the female portion—is the goddess Uma, the holder of all. There does not in the universe exist any one who may be their third. Mahadeva only is the supreme Brahma, and he is the every thing and the lord of every thing" (60)

61. Thus eulogised the almighty God, of the emblem of the bull, that soul of virtue, revealed Himself to Kashyapa that foremost of the upholders of virtue.

62. With a pleased heart, that lord of the gods then thus spoke to Kashyapa:—"O Creator of the worlds (Prajapati), I know the reason why you are praying to me.

63. The high-souled gods Indra and Upendra will both be tranquilized; but the illustrious Janarddana will carry off the Parijata tree.

64. O Kashyapa! Mahendra was cursed by the sage Devasoma (Goutoma) of high-penance—for having desired connexion with his wife; (this present calamity is the result of that curse).

65. O virtuous one!—Now do you go accompanied by Aditi to the daughter of Daksha, at the residence of Sakra; surely your two sons will be attended with blessings".

66. Having heard those words of the God Hara, that son of the son of the lotus-born one, that incomparable one—the blessed Kashyapa went to the abode of the gods, with a delighted heart and bowed down to that preceptor of celestials Mahadeva.

Footnotes and references:


Reference is to the story of the occupation of the three worlds,—the heaven, the earth, and the nether regions by the three feet of Krishna, in his dwarf incarnation-shorn of metaphor, it refers to the doctrine of universal maya inculcated in the Upanishads.


The reference is to the text of Sruti.


Refers to the five Koshas or "Sheaths" of the self, mentioned in the Upanishadas, vis, the Corporeal (Dehamaya), the Vital (Pranamaya), the Sensorial (Manomaya), the Conceptual (Vijnanmaya), and the Blissful (Anandamaya).


These according to the Hindu philosophy are five namely-Earth, water, fire, wind and the sky.

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