by G.V. Tagare | 1958 | 103,924 words | ISBN-10: 8120838246 | ISBN-13: 9788120838246
This page describes the region of shiva and of the guardians of quarters which is Chapter 34 of the Lalitopakhyana (or Lalita-Mahatmya), an important scripture within Shaktism embedded as the final part in the Brahmanda-Purana. It is presented in the form of a dialogue between sage Agastya and Hayagriva, which is incarnation of Vishnu and also includes the Lalita Sahasranama.
2. In which circular outer coverings and with which designation do they stay? O storehouse of mercy! Mention their names with their derivative as well as conventional meanings.
3. There the abode of Rudra is said to be made out of cluster of pearls. It is rendered splendid. It is five Yojanas long and five Yojanas wide.
4-6. It has sixteen outer coverings. It is very splendid and pleasing with a Pīṭha (stool, seat) in the middle. On that central Pīṭha, O sage, Mahārudra sits permanently, blazing with anger and having bow ready strung. He keeps his hand always over it. He has three eyes. In the Trikoṇa (Triangle and first covering) O Pot-born sage, three Rudras are mentioned (as seated), viz.: Hiraṇyabāhu, Senānī and Diśāmpati.
9b-11a. In the decagon the first one is Jagatāmpati the others are Rudra, Ātatāvin, Kṣetrapati, Sūta, Ahammanya (Ahantya in N.), Vanapati, Rohita, Sthapati and Vṛkṣāṇāmpati. These have kept their bows in readiness.
11b-14a. In the Duodecagon (Twelve-sided figure) the Rudras are Mantrī, Vāṇija, Kakṣapati, Bhavanti, (is the fourth), Vāgvibhu (is the fifth), Oṣadhīnāmpati (is the sixth), Uccairghoṣa, Ākrandayan, Patīnāmpati, Kṛtsnavīta, Dhāva and Sattvānāmpati. This is the fifth outer covering.
16-19a. The following sixteen are the residents in the sixteen-spoked Cakra viz Deity in the previous outer covering. The first is Paricara, Araṇyapati, Sṛkāviṣa, Jighāṃsanta, Muṣṇatāmpataya, Asīmanta, (aśimanta in N.), Suprājña, Naktañcara Prakṛtīnāmpati, Uṣṇīṣī, Gireścara, Kuluñcānāmpati, Iṣumanta, Dhanvāvida, Ātanvāna, Pratipūrva, Dadhānaka and Āyacchata (Āyacchanta).
19b-22a. In the eighth outer covering there are eighteen sets of deities, viz.: Visṛjanta (those who forsake), Asyanta (those who throw), Vidhyanta (those who pierce), Āsīnā (those who are seated), Śayānā (those who are lying down), Yanta (those who go), Jāgrata (those who keep awake), Tiṣṭhanta (those who stand), Dhāvanta (those who run), Sabhyā, Samādhipā, Aśvā, Aśvapataya (Lords of horses), Avyādhinya (devoid of sickness), Vividhyanta, Gaṇādhyakṣā, Bṛhanta (Big ones) and Gṛtsa (O suppressor of Vindhya mountain.
22b-24. The following Rudras are the deities of the ninth outer covering:—
Gṛtsādhipatis, Vrātas, Vrātādhipas, Gaṇas, Gaṇapas, Viśvarūpas, Virūpakas, Mahāntah, Kṣullakas, Rathins, Arathas, Rathas, Rathapattyās, Senas, Senānīs, Kṣattāras, Saṅgrahītṛs, Takṣāṇa, Rathakāraka and Kulāla (Various artisans are deified as Rudras).
25-28. The following are the Rudras in the tenth outer covering, viz.: Karmāras, Puñjiṣṭhas, Niṣādas, Iṣukṛdgaṇas, Dhanvakāras, Mṛgayus, Śvanīs, Śvānas, Aśvas, Aśvapatis, Bhava, Rudra, Śarva Paśupati, Nīlagrīva, Śitikaṇṭha, Kapardī, Vyuptakeśa, Sahasrākṣa, Śatadhanvā, Giriśa, Śipiviṣṭa, and Mīḍhuṣṭama.
29-32a. The following twenty-four Rudras are mentioned as occupying the eleventh Cakra (outer covering):—Iṣumān, Hrasva, Vāmana, Bṛhan, Varṣīyān, Vṛddha, Samṛddhi, Agrya, Prathama, Āśu, Ajira, Śīghra, Śibhyaka, Urmyāvasu, Anyarudra, Srotasya, Divya, Jyeṣṭha, Kaniṣṭha, Pūrvaja, Avaraja, Madhyama, Avagamya and Jaghanya. All of them are very mighty.
32b-35. The following twenty-six deities are remembered as stationed in the twelfth outer covering:—
Budhnya, Somyarudra, Pratisarpaka, Yāmyaka Kṣemya, Uvocava, Khalī, Ślokya, Āvasānyaka, Vanya, Kakṣya, Śrava, Pratiśrava, Āśuṣeṇa, Āśuratha, Śūra, Avabhinda, Varmī, Varūthī, Bilmi, Kavacī, Śruta, Sena, Dundubhya, Āhananya and Dhṛṣṇu. They have huge bodies. They are very mighty.
36-40a. Listen, O sage, the following are the Rudras stationed in the thirteenth outer covering:
Prabhṛśas, Dūtas, Prahitas, Niṣaṅgins, Iṣudhimān, Yudhitakṣṇeṣu, Svāyudha, Sudhanvā, Stutya, Pathya, Kāpya, Nāṭya, Sūdha, Sarasya, Nādhamāna, Veśanta, Kupya (?), Avadhavarṣya, Avarṣya, Medhya, Vidyutya (?), Ighrī, Ātapya, Vātya, (?), Reṣmya (N), Vāstavya, Vāstupa, and Soma. All of them are very powerful.
40b-43. The following are mentioned as the Rudra deities in the fourteenth outer covering, O sage:
Rudra, Tāmrāruṇa, Śaṅga, Paśupati, Ugra, Bhīma, Agrevadha, Dūrevadha, Hantā, Hanīyān, Vṛṣa, Harikeśaka, Tāra, Śambhu, Mayobhū, Śaṅkara, Mayaskara, Śiva, Śivatara Tīrthya, Kulya, Pārya, Apārya, Prataraṇa, Uttaraṇa, Ātarya, Labhya, Ṣaṣṭha (?) (Śaṣpya in N) and Phenya.
44-48. The following thirty-two Rudra Devatās, O intelligent one, stay permanently in the fifteenth outer covering with their weapons
Sikatya, Pravāhya, Iriṇya, Prapathya, (O sage), Kiṃśila, Kṣayaṇa (thereafter), Kapardī, Pulastya, Goṣṭhya, Gṛhya (as also), Talpya, Gehya, Kāṭya, Gahvareṣṭha, Urudīpaka (Hradayya in N.), Niveṣṭya, Pāntavya (Pāṃsavya in N.), Rathanya, (Rajasyaka in N.), Śukya (Śuṣkya in N.), Harīti, Alothas (Alohya in N.), Lopyas, Urya, Sūrmya, Payeya (Parṇa in N.), Parṇaśa, Vaguramāṇaka, Abhighnanāśidu (Abhighnan and Akkhidan in N.), Prakhidan, Kirika and Devānāṃhṛdaya.
49-51. In the sixteenth outer covering the following (four) blazing deities staying in the doorways in the east etc. worship Mahārudra:—Vikṣiṇatkas, Vicinvatkas, Nirhatanāmakas and Āmīvaktras. Thus Mahārudra is served by the thousands of Rudras stationed in the sixteen outer coverings. He carries out the behest of Lalitā. He stays there in the north-east corner of the pearl chamber for the prosperity of the worlds.
52. Enumerated in the Śatarudriya scripture, these Rudras of great strength protect day and night all those who are richly endowed with devotion to Lalitā. These (deities) put obstacles in the path of those who are not the devotees of goddess Lalitā.
54. Within the pearl chamber and seven Yojanas from it is the chamber of emerald. It is four Yojanas in height.
55-57. It is rendered very splendid by means of the proper arrangements of the Gopuras etc. as before. Four Mansions belonging to Daṇḍanāthā are built there in the intermediate corners between the quarters beginning with southeast. They are as spacious and large as the abodes of Mantriṇī.
Those deities who were stationed on the steps of the leading chariot Giricakra during the great war with Bhaṇḍāsura stay here (always) alert and watchful. All the grounds here are well paved with rows of emerald stones. They are very splendid.
58-61. They are full of groves of golden palms. They are equipped in plenty by all the requisite things. There, all the deities have the same splendour and magnificence as Daṇḍanāthā. They move about, playfully whirling and shaking ploughshare and pestle. The palmyra trees are innumerable. They are as wonderful and bright as fresh gold. Their trunks are a Yojana in height. They have very broad and large leaves. Their barks are golden. They are very glossy and smooth. They have good shade and they are fully laden with fruits. From the top to the root many pots of liquor are kept hanging down from those palmrya trees. All these have been made by the artisans for pleasing Daṇḍanāthā.
62-64. Drinking the palm juice continuously, the Cakra deities Jṛmbhiṇī and others, the Bhairavas beginning with Hetuka, the seven Nigraha deities, Unmattabhairavī and Svapneśī—all these are fully intoxicated. In that excitement of inebriation, they dance about all round in the various quarters wherever Daṇḍinī happened to glance at. All these deities have the same splendour and magnificence as the goddess.
65. The residence of Daṇḍanāthā (here) is only for her prestige. For the purpose of serving (Lalitā), she has another residence in the Mahāpadmāṭavī region. Since her mansion is far from the chamber, she has another mansion assigned to her for the purpose of serving (Lalitā).
66. In the emerald enclosure, seven Yojanas away from it is the rampart wall of coral as pink-coloured as the morning sun.
67-69a. There the entire ground is paved and beautified with corals. Here Brahmā sits in his lotus seat. Brahmā who resembles coral in his complexion always comes there from Brahmaloka along with all leading sages for serving Śrīlalitādevī. He is always active and alert in this respect. O Quaffer of the ocean, he remains there along with the creators of subjects beginning with Marīci.
69b-70. At the command of goddess Lalitā and for the prosperity of the worlds, the great fourteen lores, thousands of subsidiary lores, the sixtyfour fine arts—all these assume physical bodies and resort to Brahmā’s residence in the coral enclosure.
71-72. Within the coral enclosure and seven Yojanas away from it is the world of Viṣṇu. In all directions it is surrounded by ruby Maṇḍapas (raised dais with canopies etc.) Eager to serve Lalitā, Viṣṇu assumes different forms four, ten or twelve and the eternal lord Mādhava always stays there.
73-75. The deities of ten incarnations who rose up from the nails of Śrīdevī in the course of great battle with Bhaṇḍāsura reside in the Maṇḍapa made of ruby. The only difference in this chamber from the previous ones is this that the surface is covered with that of ruby stones (here). There within the chamber the lord holding the conch, discus and mace divides himself into twelve forms and accords defence in the quarters beginning with the east.
76-83. Keśava of golden colour holds discus and protects the east. Nārāyaṇa resembling the black cloud holds conch and protects west. As dark as the petals of blue lotus Mādhava possessing honey (?) protects (everyone). The great lord Govinda holds bow and has the lustre of the moon. He protects the right (i.e. the southern side). Viṣṇu who resembles the filaments of the lotus holds the ploughshare and protects the north. Madhusūdana who has the lustre of the lotus and holds Musala (pestle) protects the southeast; Trivikrama who has the refulgence of the fire holds sword in his hand and protects southwest. Vāmana who has the brilliance of the mid-day sun holds thunderbolt and protects north-west. Śrīdhara who has the lustre of Puṇḍarīka (lotus) and has the sharp-edged spear for his weapon protects the north-east. Hṛṣīkeśa who has the lustre of lightning and holds the club protects in the southern quarter (or in the lower region). Padmanābha whose refulgence is equal to that of a thousand suns holds the Śārṅga bow in his hand and surrounds the ruby dais in a clock-wise direction. Dāmodara who has all weapons, who is omnipotent and omniscient, who has faces all round, who resembles Indragopa (glowworm), who holds the noose in his hand, who is never defeated, who is the soul of everything and who is full of devotion to Laīitā surrounds the ruby dais in a anticlockwise direction.
84. Thus by means of his twelve bodies the lotus-eyed Lord shines in the Viṣṇuloka occupying the ruby dais.
85. Within the enclosure of diverse kinds of gems and seven Yojanas from it there is a charming dais named Sahasrastambhaka (thousand-columned).
86-87. It is set with and beautified with different kinds of gems. There is enclosure (chamber) there which is very high and which is built of different gems. There is a row of thousand columns transversely. (?) There are many such rows in the four directions.
88. The covering above is as before by means of blocks of gems and jewels. It is there that Śiva’a world stands aloft with sparkling splendour.
89. It is remembered that the twenty-eight Saiva-āgamas (scriptural texts of Śaivite philosophy) are present there in embodied form. There are excellent persons there, the chief of whom are Nandin, Bhṛṅgi and Mahākāla.
90-94. There are thousands of elephant-faced lords. There are deities of twenty-six Tattvas in that excellent Śivaloka on the hall of thousand columns. Īśāna, the moon-crested lord is the knower of all lores. He carries out the orders of Lalitā and abides by them. He repeats the Mantra of Lalitā continuously. He is always delighted in his mind. By means of his benign vision special to him, he illuminates the power of intellect which has the form of great refulgence of his devotees. He does so for the sake of enabling his devotees to achieve the Mantra of Lalitā. The power of intellect can thereby be competent to dispel the dense darkness within and without. Mahādeva who stays in the thousand-columned hall is omniscient. He does everything. He is full of devotion to Śrīdevī. O Potborn sage, he stays there resorting to different enclosures.
Footnotes and references:
As this verse suggests, this chapter (main portion at least) describes the Cakra of sixteen Āvaraṇas with Rudra (or Mahārudra) as the central, presiding deity. He is always alert with his bow. In the enclosing triangle are three Rudras viz. Hiraṇyabāhu, Senānī and Diśām Pati. The names of Rudras in different Āvaraṇas (sixteen in all) show the palpable influence of Śatarudriya from which they (i.e. the epithets) are borrowed and arranged around Mahārudra. The meanings of the names of different Rudras make it clear how the Rudra was given benevolent and malevolent epithets and as such the concept was complex in those times. Traditional duties of Trinity, of creation (Brahmā), maintenance (Viṣṇu) and destruction (Rudra) are a simplistic (and inadequate) presentation.
These Rudras stay in the NE of the Pearl-chamber and protect the devotees of Lalitā (vv. 1-52)
VV.2-9 describe the enclosure of gold and topaz. The residents of this enclosure are Siddhas (male and female).
These are seven and so the outer covering may be a heptagon.
The text Adhaḥ parivaro etc. should be ādyaḥ paricaro as in N.
VV.54-65 describe the emerald chamber of Daṇḍanāthā.
VV.66-70 Coral enclosure—residence of god Brahmā.
VV.71-84 describe the region of Viṣṇu with ruby Maṇḍapas. The first Twelve names of Viṣṇu uttered at the beginning of a Sandhyā (morning or evening prayer) viz. Keśava, Nārāyaṇa, Dāmodara are regarded as the forms of Viṣṇu with which he protects the world.
VV. 85-94 give the description of a thousand-pillared hall and the residence of Śiva. This Śiva is Śrīdevī’s devotee (on a lower level). Mention of 28 Śaiva Āgamas in V. 89 does not clarify whether the Advaita or Dvaita theory is advocated by them.