The Shiva Purana (English translation)

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

This page relates “description of the special war” 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 21 - Description of the Special War

Sanatkumāra said:—

1. On seeing the leaders of the Gaṇas, Nandin, Gaṇeśa and Kārttikeya, the Dānavas rushed at them for a duel combat.

2. Kālanemi clashed with Nandin; Śumbha fought Gaṇeśa and Niśumbha hesitatingly rushed at Kārttikeya.

3. With five arrows Niśumbha hit the peacock of Kārttikeya in the chest and it fell unconscious.

4. Then the infuriated Kārttikeya discharged five arrows at his chariot and pierced the horses and the charioteer.

5. The invincible hero hit Niśumbha with another sharp arrow quickly and roared.

6. The Asura Niśumbha of great prowess and heroism hit Kārttikeya in the battle with his arrow as he roared.

7. By the time the furious Kārttikeya seized his spear, Niśumbha struck him with it.

8. Thus, O Vyāsa, a great fight between Kārttikeya and Niśumbha ensued as they shouted heroically.

9. Then Nandin hit Kālanemi with seven arrows and pierced his horses, banner, chariot and charioteer.

10. With very sharp shafts discharged from his bow, the infuriated Kālanemi cut the bow of Nandin.

11. Defying the great demon Kālanemi the heroic Nandīśvara hit him in the chest with his spear.

12. With his horses and charioteer killed and himself wounded in the chest, he broke the top of a mountain and hit Nandin.

13. Then Śumbha and Gaṇeśa seated respectively in a chariot and on a mouse fought each other with volleys of arrows.

14. Gaṇeśa hit Śumbha in his chest with an arrow and felled his charioteer with three arrows on the ground.

15. Then the infuriated Śumbha covered Gaṇeśa with a shower of arrows. Hitting the mouse with three arrows he roared like thunder.

16. The mouse pierced by the arrows, shook with acute pain. Gaṇeśa was thrown off (his vehicle) and he became a foot soldier (as it were).

17. Then Gaṇeśa hit Śumbha in his chest with his axe and felled him to the ground. Thereafter he mounted his mouse again.

18. Lord Gaṇeśa of elephantine face got ready for the fight. He hit him mockingly and angrily as if hitting a great elephant with a goad.

19. Kālanemi and Śumbha simultaneously attacked Gaṇeśa furiously with arrows as ruthless as serpents.

20. On seeing him afflicted, the powerful Vīrabhadra accompanied by a crore goblins rushed in.

21. The Kūṣmāṇḍas, Bhairavas, Vetālas, Yoginīs, Piśācas, Ḍākinīs and Gaṇas came there with him.

22. The Earth, resonant with various kinds of noise, shouts of joy, leonine roars and the sounds of Ḍamarukas, quaked.

23. Then the Bhūtas ran here and there devouring the Dānavas. They jumped up and danced in the battle field and threw the Asura on the ground.

24. In the meantime, O Vyāsa, Nandin and Guha regained their consciousness and got up. They roared in the battlefield again.

25. Nandin and Kārttikeya came hurriedly and struck the Daityas m the battle ground with incessant volleys of arrows.

26. Then the army of the Daityas became agitated and dejected with many Daityas wounded, split, killed, felled to the ground and devoured.

27. Thus Nandin, Kārttikeya the formidable and valorous, Vīrabhadra and the other Gaṇas roared much in the battle.

28. Then those two generals of the son of the ocean, Niśumbha and Śumbha, the great Daitya Kālanemi and the other Asuras were defeated.

29. On seeing the army destroyed, the powerful son of the ocean rushed at the Gaṇas in his chariot of waving and wafting colours.

30. Thereat even the defeated Daityas became jubilant. O Vyāsa, they roared much and got ready for the fray.

31. The victorious Gaṇas of Śiva too roared, led by Nandin, Kārttikeya, Gaṇeśa and Vīrabhadara, O sage.

32. The trumpets of the elephants, the neighing of the horses, the rumbling of the chariots, the sounds of the conches and war-drums and the leonine roars of the armies rose up.

33. The space between heaven and the earth became enveloped by the many arrows discharged by Jalandhara as if by floating masses of mist.

34. Hitting Nandin and Gaṇeśa with five arrows each and Vīrabhadra with twenty he roared like thunder.

35. Kārttikeya the heroic son of Śiva then swiftly hit the Daitya Jalandhara with his spear and roared.

36. With the body pierced through by the spear, the Daitya fell on the ground with eyes rolling. But the powerful Asura swiftly stood up.

37. Then Jalandhara the infuriated leader of the Daityas hit Kārttikeya in his chest with his mace.

38. O Vyāsa, plainly exhibiting the successful efficiency of the Mace secured as a favour from Brahmā Kārttikeya fell on the ground suddenly.

39. Similarly, struck by the mace Nandin too fell on the ground, He was distressed a little although he was a great hero and a destroyer of enemies.

40. Then the infuriated hero Gaṇeśa came there after remembering the lotus like feet of Śiva and split the mace of the Daitya with his axe.

41. Vīrabhadra then hit the Dānava in his chest with three arrows. He cut off the banner, umbrella, bow and the horses of the Daitya with seven arrows.

42. Then the infuriated leader of the Daityas lifted up his terrible Śakti and felled Gaṇeśa. He mounted another chariot then.

43. The powerful leader of the Daityas did not mind Vīrabhadra at all. Angrily he rushed at him.

44. Jalandhara, the heroic king of Daityas, hit Vīrabhadra with a fierce arrow and roared.

45. The infuriated Vīrabhadra split that arrow with a sharp-edged arrow. With another great arrow he hit him too.

46. Then both of them, the most excellent of heroes refulgent like the sun, fought each other with different kinds of weapons and missiles.

47. Vīrabhadra then felled his horses with his arrows. He forcefully cut off him bow and flags too.

48. Then the king of the Daityas leapt up to him with a great iron club. That powerful warrior reached very near Vīrabhadra very quickly.

49. The heroic and powerful son of the ocean hit Vīrabhadra on his head with his great iron club. He then roared.

50. Vīrabhadra, the leader of the Gaṇas, fell on the ground with his head shattered by the iron club and shed much blood.

51. On seeing Vīrabhadra fallen, the terrified Gaṇas abandoned the battle ground shrieking and fled to lord Śiva.

52. On hearing the tumultuous uproar of the Gaṇas, the moon-crested lord asked the excellent Gaṇas, the heroes standing near him.

Śiva said:—

53. How is this tumultuous uproar among my Gaṇas? O heroes, let this be enquired into. Peace shall be established by me, of course.

54. Even as the lord of the gods was conducting the enquiry, the leaders of the Gaṇas approached the lord.

55. On seeing them dejected, the lord enquired after their health. The Gaṇas then intimated to him everything in detail.

56. On hearing it, lord Śiva, the expert in divine sports assured them of freedom from fear increasing their enthusiasm.