The Shiva Purana (English translation)

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

This page relates “shankhacuda is slain” 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 40 - Śaṅkhacūḍa is slain

Sanatkumāra said:—

1. On seeing the important and major portion of his army killed, including heroes as dear to him as his life, the Dānava became very furious.

2. He spoke to Śiva. “I am here standing ready. Be steady in the battle. What is it to me, if these are killed? Fight me standing face to face”.

3. O sage, after saying this and resolving resolutely the king of Dānavas stood ready facing Śiva.

4. The Dānava hurled divine missiles at him and showered arrows like the cloud pouring rain.

5. He exhibited various kinds of deceptive measures invisible and inscrutable to all the excellent gods and Gaṇas and terrifying as well.

6. On seeing that, Śiva sportively discharged thereat the excessively divine Māheśvara missiles that destroy all illusions.

7. All the illusions, were quelled rapidly by its brilliance. Though they were divine missiles they became divested of their brilliance.

8. Then in the battle, the powerful lord Śiva suddenly seized his trident which could not be withstood even by brilliant persons, in order to slay him.

9. In order to prevent him then, an unembodied celestial voice said—“O Śiva, do not hurl the trident now. Please listen to this request.

10. O Śiva, by all means, you are competent to destroy the entire universe in a trice. What doubt then in regard to a single Dānava Śaṅkhacūḍa?

11. Still, the limit imposed by the Vedas should not be disregarded by you, the lord. O great god, listen to that. Make it truthful and fruitful.

12-13. O lord Śiva, it has been mentioned by Brahmā, that, as long as he wears the armour of Viṣṇu and as long as his wife maintains the marital fidelity, Śaṅkhacūḍa has neither death nor old age. Please make those words truthful.’

14. On hearing this celestial voice, Śiva said “So be it”. Viṣṇu came there at the wish of Śiva. Śiva, who is the goal of the good, commanded him.

15. Then, in the guise of an old brahmin, Viṣṇu, the foremost of those who wield magic, approached Śaṅkhacūḍa and told him.

The aged brahmin said:—

16-17. “O lord of Dānavas, give me the alms for

which I have come to you. I shall not say openly what I wish to have from you who are favourably disposed to the distressed. I shall tell you when you have promised me first.

18. With face and eyes indicating pleasure the king replied affirmatively. Then the deceptive Viṣṇu in the form of a brahmin said—“I am the suppliant for your armour.”

19. On hearing that, the lord of Dānavas, a well wisher of the brahmins and of truthful word handed over the divine armour, his vital breath, to the brahmin.

20. Viṣṇu thus snatched off his armour by means of deception. Then in the guise of Śaṅkhacūḍa Viṣṇu approached Tulasī.

21. Lord Viṣṇu, an expert in wielding magic went there and deposited his semen in her vaginal passage for the protection of gods.

22. In the meantime the lord of Dānavas approached Śiva without the armour. He took up his trident that blazed to slay Śaṅkhacūḍa.

23. That trident, named Vijaya, of Śiva, the great Ātman, shone illuminating heaven and earth.

24. It was as refulgent as a crore midday suns and as fierce as the shooting flame of fire at the time of dissolution. It could neither be prevented nor withstood. It was never ineffective in destroying enemies.

25. It had a fierce halo all round. It was the best of all weapons and missiles. It was unbearable to gods and Asuras. It was terrible to all.

26. In order to annihilate the whole cosmos sportively all brilliance had converged into it.

27. It was a thousand Dhanus in length and a hundred Hastas in width. It was in the form of individual as well as universal soul. It was eternal and uncreated.

28. That trident whirling round over the head of Śaṅkhacūḍa for a while fell on the head of the Dānava at the behest of Śiva and reduced him to ashes.

29. O brahmin, then it rapidly returned to Śiva and having finished its work went away by the aerial path with the speed of the mind.

30. The Dundubhis were sounded in the heaven. Gandharvas and Kinnaras sang. The sages and the gods eulogised and the celestial damsels danced.

31. A continuous shower of flowers fell over Śiva. Viṣṇu, Brahmā, Indra, other gods and sages praised him.

32. Saṅkhacūḍa the king of Dānavas was released from his curse by the favour of Śiva. He regained his original form.

33. All the conches in the world are formed of the bones of Śaṅkhacūḍa. Except for Śiva, the holy water from the conch is sacred for every one.

34. O great sage, particularly to Viṣṇu and Lakṣmī the water from the conch is pleasant. To all persons connected with Viṣṇu it is so but not to Siva.

35. After slaying him thus, Śiva went to Śivaloka seated on his bull, joyously, accompanied by Pārvatī, Kārttikeya and the Gaṇas.

36. Viṣṇu went to Vaikuṇṭha. Kṛṣṇa became complacent. The gods went to their abodes with great delight.

37. The universe regained normalcy. The whole earth was freed of obstacles. The sky was pure. The whole world became auspicious.

38. Thus I have narrated to you the delightful story of lord Śiva that removes all misery, yields wealth and fulfils cherished desires.

39. It is conducive to prosperity and longevity. It prevents all obstacles. It yields worldly pleasure and salvation. It confers the fruits of all cherished desires.

40-41. The intelligent man who hears or narrates the story of the moon-crested lord, or reads or teaches it shall undoubtedly derive wealth, grains, progeny, happiness, all desires and particularly devotion to Śiva.

42. This narrative is unequalled. It destroys all torments. It generates great knowledge. It increases devotion to Śiva.

43. The brahmin listener attains brahminical splendour; the Kṣatriya becomes a conqueror; the Vaiśya rich and the Śūdra the most excellent of men.