The Shiva Purana (English translation)

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

This page relates “pippalada incarnation of shiva” 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 24 - Pippalāda incarnation of Śiva

Nandīśvara said:—

1. O intelligent one, listen with very great pleasure to the Pippalāda incarnation of Śiva that is excellent and that inspires devotion.

2. Formerly there was a great brahmin and an excellent sage Dadhīci. He was born of Cyavana of Bhṛgu family. He was a great devotee of Śiva and very powerful.

3. In the fight with Kṣuva, Viṣṇu and other gods were defeated by this sage who had the support of Śiva and they were cursed.

4. He had a fortunate wife Suvarcā, who was very noble and chaste. The gods were cursed by her.

5. The great lord, an expert in different kinds of sports and extremely brilliant was born of her in the name of Pippalāda.

Sūta said:—

6. On hearing these wonderful words of Nandīśvara, the excellent sage Sanatkumāra spoke with palms joined in reverence and shoulders drooping down.

Sanatkumāra said:—

7. O Nandīśvara, O intelligent one, you are blessed in that you have assumed the form of Rudra himself. O dear, you are my excellent preceptor. This wonderful story has been narrated by you.

8. O son of Śilāda, from my father Brahmā, the account of the battle with Kṣuva and the defeat of Viṣṇu has already been heard by me. So also the curse has been heard by me.

9. Now, I was to hear about the curse that Suvarcā pronounced on the gods. Afterwards, I wish to hear the auspicious story of Pippalāda.

Sūta said:—

10. On hearing these auspicious words of the son of Brahmā the delighted son of Śilāda remembered the lotus-like feet of Śiva and replied.

Nandīśvara said:—

11. O great sage, once Indra and other gods were defeated by the Daityas who had the support of the demon Vṛtra.

12. All the gods had formerly kept their respective weapons in the hermitage of Dadhīca. Hence they were immediately defeated.

13. Then the harassed gods and the sages along with Indra immediately went to Brahmā’s region and narrated their distress to him.

14. On hearing the words of the gods Brahmā, the grandfather of the worlds, mentioned the details of what Tvaṣṭṛ was desirous of doing.

16. This Asura has been created by Tvaṣṭṛ by means of his penance in order to kill you. The name of that Asura is Vṛtra. He is of great brilliance and the leader of all Daityas.

16. You shall make such efforts as would ensure his death. O intelligent one, listen to the means thereof. For the sake of virtue I shall tell you the same.

17. There is a great sage Dadhīci of great penance and of full control of his sense-organs. After propitiating Śiva he secured the boon of adamantine bones formerly.

18. You all request for his bones. He will undoubtedly give them to you. Make the thunderbolt staff therewith and kill Vṛtra without hesitation.

Nandīśvara said:—

19. On hearing the words of Brahmā, Indra accompanied by his preceptor and other gods went immediately to the excellent hermitage of Dadhīci.

20. There Indra saw the sage in the company of Suvarcā. Along with the preceptor and other gods he humbly and respectfully bowed to him with palms joined in reverence.

21. On realising his intention the sage, the most excellent of scholars sent his wife Suvarcā to the inner apartments of the hermitage.

22. Then the king of gods, accompanied by the gods bent upon achieving his own object, and most efficient in polity spoke to the great sage.

Indra said:

23. All of us, the gods and the sages are oppressed by Tvaṣṭṛ. We seek refuge in you, worthy of refuge, a great devotee of Śiva and a liberal donor.

24. O brahmin, give us your bones of adamantine strength. I shall make my thunderbolt with your love and kill the demon.

25. Thus requested, the sage fond of helping others meditated on lord Śiva and abandoned his body.

26. Immediately he reached Brahma’s region with his bondage of actions quashed. There was a shower of flowers and the people were agreeably surprised.

27. Indra then called the divine cow Surabhi to lick up the marrow etc. He directed Viśvakarman to make the weapon with the bones.

28. At his behest Viśvakarman made all the weapons with the sage’s bones—very firm and adamantine—that had the brilliance of Śiva.

29. With his backbone he made the thunderbolt, arrow and the missile called Brahmaśiras. With the other bones he made many other weapons.

30. O sage, flourishing with Śiva’s brilliance, the infuriated Indra lifted the thunderbolt and rushed against Vṛtra like Rudra rushing against the god of death.

31. Indra who was well prepared, cut off the peaklike head of Vṛtra with the thunderbolt forcefully.

32. There was great jubilation among the heaven-dwellers. O dear, the gods eulogised Indra. Showers of flowers fell on him.

33. O dear, thus this story of Vṛtra’s slaughter is related to you as arising from the context. Now listen respectfully to the incarnation of Śiva as Pippalāda.

34. At the behest of her lord Suvarcā the chaste wife of the sage Dadhīci, the noble soul went to the inner apartments of the hermitage.

35. At the behest of her husband she finished her household duties and came there. The pitiable lady could not see her lord there.

36. After coming there and seeing the most inauspicious occurrence there, O excellent sage, the surprised Suvarcā spoke to the gods.

37. The chaste lady, on realising that all this was the action of the gods, became angry. The infuriated wife of the excellent sage, Suvarcā, cursed them.

Suvarcā said:—

38. “Ah! the gods are very wicked. They are covetous, stupid but very skifīil in manipulating their own affairs. Let them all, inclusive of Indra, become beasts from today.”

39. Suvarcā, a woman saint and the beloved wife of the sage cursed the gods inclusive of Indra thus.

40. That chaste lady desired to go to the worlds of her husband. With the sacred twigs, the noble lady prepared the funeral pyre.

41. Then a pleasant celestial voice urged by Śiva spoke to Suvarcā, consoling her.

The Celestial Voice said:—

42. O intelligent lady, do not carry out this calamitous task. Listen to my weighty words. The semen of the sage is in your womb. Develop it carefully.

43. O gentle lady, later on, you may do as you please. It is the command of Brahmā that a pregnant woman should not bum herself.

Nandīśvara said:—

44. O great sage, after saying this the celestial voice stopped. On hearing that voice the wife of the sage was surprised for a moment.

45. That great chaste lady, Suvarcā, desirous of attaining the world of her husband sat down and broke open her belly with a stone.

46. The foetus of the child of the great sage! of brilliant divine body, came out of her belly illuminating all the ten quarters.

47. O dear, it was the incarnation of Rudra himself born of the sage Dadhīci. He was competent to perform his divine sports. He therefore manifested himself.

48-49. On seeing her son of divine form, the beloved wife of the sage Suvarcā realised in hef mind that it was the incarnation of Rudra himself. The great chaste lady became delighted, bowed to him and eulogised him. O great sage, that form of the child was impressed on her heart.

50. Suvarcā of pure vision, the mother, desirous of going to her husband’s region, smilingly and lovingly spoke to her son.

Suvarcā said:—

51. O dear, O lord Śiva, O fortunate one, stay near this holy fig tree for a long time. Be the bestower of happiness to all.

52. Out of affection allow me to go to the region of my husband. Staying there along with my husband I shall meditate on you in the form of Rudra.

Nandīśvara said:—

53. After speaking thus to her son that chaste lady Suvarcā followed her husband by means of the great transcendental meditation.

54. O sage, thus the wife of Dadhīci was re-united with her husband. After reaching Śiva’s region she served Śiva devotedly.

55. In the meantime the delighted gods inclusive of Indra, hurriedly came there along with Ac sages as though invited there.

56. Viṣṇu and Brahmā too, accompanied by their attendants came over there to see Śiva who had taken incarnation in the world through Suvarcā and Dadhīci.

57. On seeing him there, incarnated as the sage’s son, they bowed to him with palms joined in reverence and made obeisances.

58. O excellent sage, there was great jubilation among the gods. The Dundubhis were sounded and dancing girls danced joyously.

59. The sons of Gandharvas sang. Kinnaras and other players played on instruments. The gods showered flowers.

60. After consecrating the refulgent child and the fig tree who became the father of Rudra, Viṣṇu and other gods eulogised him again.

61. The delighted Brahmā named him Pippalāda. Viṣṇu and the gods said “O lord of the gods be pleased”.

62. After saying this and making great jubilation, Brahmā, Viṣṇu and the gods went to their respective abodes.

63. Then Rudra, the great lord in the form of Pippalāda, performed a penance for a long time at the foot of the fig tree, with a desire to bestow benefit on the worlds.

64. As Pippalāda, following the convention of the world, performed the penance, a long time passed by.