The Shiva Purana (English translation)

by J. L. Shastri | 1970 | 616,585 words

This page relates “resuscitation of ganesha” as found in the Shiva-purana, which, in Hinduism, represents one of the eighteen Mahapuranas. This work eulogizes Lord Shiva as the supreme deity, besides topics such as cosmology and philosophy. It is written in Sanskrit and claims to be a redaction of an original text consisting of 100,000 metrical verses.

Chapter 17 - The Resuscitation of Gaṇeśa

Nārada said:—

1. O Brahmā, of great intellect, please narrate. When the entire news was heard what did the great goddess Pārvatī do? I wish to hear all in fact.

Brahmā said:—

2. O foremost among sages, listen. I shall mention the story of the mother of the universe in the manner that it happened afterwards.

3. When Gaṇeśa was killed, the Gaṇas were very jubilant. They played on Mṛdaṅgas and Paṭahas.

4. After cutting off the head of Gaṇeśa even as Śiva became sorry, goddess Pārvatī became furious, O great sage.

5. “O what shall I do? Where shall I go? Alas, great misery has befallen me. How can this misery, this great misery be dispelled now?

6. “My son has been killed by all the gods and the Gaṇas. I shall destroy them all or create a deluge.”

7. Lamenting thus, the great goddess of all the worlds angrily created in a moment hundreds and thousands of Śaktis.

8. Śaktis who were thus created, bowed to Pārvatī, the mother of the universe and blazing brilliantly spoke—“O mother, be pleased to command.”

9. O great sage, on hearing that, Pārvatī, the Śakti of Śiva, the Prakṛti, the great Māyā, spoke to them all in great fury.

The goddess said:—

10. O Śaktis, O goddesses, now a great deluge shall be created by you at my bidding. You need not hesitate in this regard.

11. “O friends, devour forcibly all these sages, gods, Yakṣas, Rākṣasas belonging to us and others.”

Brahmā said:—

12. On being commanded by her, the infuriated Śaktis got ready to destroy the gods and others.

13. Just as the fire consumes dry grass so also these Śaktis attempted to destroy.

14-15. Leaders of Gaṇas or Viṣṇu, Brahmā or Śiva, Indra or Kubera, Skanda or the Sun—Śaktis began to destroy them. Wherever one looked, Śaktis were present.

16. Karālīs (the Terrific), Kubjakās (the humpbacked), Khañjās (the lame), Lambaśīrṣās (the tall-headed) the innumerable Śaktis took up the gods with their hands and threw them in their own mouths.

17-18. On seeing that Śiva, Brahmā, Viṣṇu, Indra, the other gods, Gaṇas and the sages began to doubt what the Goddess Pārvatī would be doing, whether she would create an untimely dissolution. Their hopes and aspirations for life were quelled.

19. They all gathered together and discussed—“What shall be done now? Let us ponder.” Discussing thus they spoke to one another.

20. “Only when the goddess Pārvatī is pleased can there be a relief; not otherwise, even with our maximum efforts.

21. Even Śiva who is an expert in different sports and is deluding us all, seems distressed like an ordinary man.

22. When the hips of all the gods are broken and Pārvatī is fiery in rage, none of them dare stand before her.

23-24. Whether a person belonging to her or to others, whether a god, a demon, a Gaṇa, a guardian of the quarters, a Yakṣa, a Kinnara, a Sage, Brahmā, Viṣṇu or even lord Śiva himself, none could stand before Śiva.

25. On seeing her dazzling brilliance, burning all round, all of them were frightened and they stayed far away.

26. In the meantime, O sage Nārada, you of divine vision came there for the happiness of the gods and Gaṇas.

27. After bowing to me, Brahmā, Viṣṇu and Śiva and discussing jointly, he said—“Let us think and act together.”

28. The gods then discussed with you of noble soul “How could our misery be quelled.” They then said.

29. As long as the goddess Pārvatī does not favour us there will be no happiness. No suspicion need be entertained in this matter.

30. You and other sages went to Pārvatī in order to appease her anger. They then propitiated her.

31. They bowed to her again and again. They eulogised her with many hymns. They tried to please her with devotion and at the behest of the gods and Gaṇas spoke thus.

The celestial sages said:—

32. O Mother of the universe, obeisance to you. Obeisance to you, O Śivā. Obeisance to you. O Caṇḍikā. Obeisance to you, Kalyāṇī.

33. O mother, you alone are the primordial Śakti. You are the eternal cause of creation. You alone are the sustaining power. You alone are the cause of dissolution.

34. O goddess, be pleased. Spread peace. Obeisance be to you. O goddess, the three worlds are agitated by your fury.

Brahmā said:—

35. The great goddess Pārvatī thus eulogised by you and other sages glanced at them furiously. She did not say anything.

36. Then the sages bowed at her lotus like feet and spoke to her in low voice with devotion joining their palms in reverence.

The sages said:—

37. O goddess, forgive, forgive. The final dissolution seems near at hand. Your lord is standing here. O mother, you see him.

38. What are we, the gods, Viṣṇu, Brahmā and others? We are only your subjects. We stand here with palms joined in reverence.

39. O great goddess, our guilts shall be forgiven. We are agitated and distressed. O Pārvatī give us peace.

Brahmā said:—

40. After saying this, the agitated and distressed sages stood in front of her with palms joined in reverence.

41. On hearing their words Pārvatī was pleased and she replied to the sages with her mind full of compassion.

The goddess said:—

42-43. If my son regains life there may not be further annihilation. If you can arrange for him an honourable status and position among you as the chief presiding officer, there may be peace in the world. Otherwise you will never be happy.

Brahmā said:—

44. Thus warned, you and other sages returned and intimated to all the gods everything in detail.

45. On hearing that, Indra and other gods joined their palms in reverence and piteously intimated to Śiva what had transpired there.

46. On hearing what the gods said, Śiva spoke thus—“It shall be done accordingly so that there may be peace over all the worlds.”

47. “You shall go to the northern direction and whatever person you meet at first you cut off his head and fit it to this body.”

Brahmā said:—

48. Then they carried out Śiva’s behests and acted accordingly. They brought the headless body of Gaṇeśa and washed it well.

49. They paid homage to it and started towards the north. It was a single-tusked elephant that they met.

50-51. They took the head and fitted it to the body. After joining it, the gods bowed to Śiva, Viṣṇu and Brahmā and spoke—“What has been ordered by you has been carried out by us. Let the task left incomplete be performed now.”

52. Then the Pārṣadas shone happily. After hearing those words they awaited eagerly what Śiva would say.

53. Then Brahmā, Viṣṇu and other gods spoke after bowing to lord Śiva who is free from the ill effects of the attributes.

54. They said:—“Since we all are born out of your brilliant Energy let that Energy come into it by the recitation of the Vedic mantras.

55. Saying so, they jointly sprinkled the holy water, invoked by the mantras on that body after remembering Śiva.

56. Immediately after the contact of the holy water the boy was resuscitated to life and joined with consciousness. As Śiva willed, the boy woke up as from a sleep.

57. He was handsome, extremely comely. He had the face of an elephant. He was red-complexioned. He was delighted with face beaming. He was brilliant and had fine features.

58. O great sage, on seeing the son of Pārvatī resuscitated to life, they all rejoiced and their miseries came to an end.

59. They showed him delightfully to the goddess. On seeing her restored to life, the goddess was greatly delighted.