The Bhagavata Purana

by G. V. Tagare | 1950 | 780,972 words | ISBN-10: 8120838203 | ISBN-13: 9788120838208

This page describes The Progeny of Svayambhuva Manu’s Daughters which is chapter 1 of the English translation of the Bhagavata Purana, one of the eighteen major puranas containing roughly 18,000 metrical verses. Topics include ancient Indian history, religion, philosophy, geography, mythology, etc. The text has been interpreted by various schools of philosophy. This is the first chapter of the Fourth Skandha of the Bhagavatapurana.

Chapter 1 - The Progeny of Svāyambhuva Manu’s Daughters

Maitreya said:

1. Besides (his two sons Priyavrata and Uttānapāda) Manu had three daughters from Śatarūpā. They became well known as Ākūti, Devahūti and Prasūti.

2. The king, with the consent of Śatarūpā, gave Akūti to (the progenitor) Ruci in marriage, on condition of Putrikā dharma[1] (even though) Akūti had brothers.

3. The venerable progenitor Ruci, full of the spiritual glory of Brahman, begot through her a twin—a son and a daughter, by virtue of his supreme concentration (of mind on the Lord).

4. Of the two, the male child was Viṣṇu himself who had assumed the form of Yajña). And the female child was called Dakṣiṇā (‘sacrificial fee’) who was a part of Lakṣmī (the goddess of fortune) inseparable (from Viṣṇu)[2].

5. (As per stipulation in the marriage) Svāyambhuva Manu brought to his house his daughter’s son of pervasive glory. With great delight, Ruci (also) joyfully accepted Dakṣiṇā (as his child).

6. Lord Yajña, the Lord of all Sacrifices (or mantras) married hen (Dakṣiṇā) who was in love with him. He felt delighted and had twelve sons by her, who too was highly pleased.

7. These twelve sons were: Toṣa, Pratoṣa, Santoṣa, Bhadra, Śānti, Iḍaspati, Idhma, Kavi, Vibhu, Svahna, Sudeva, Rocana.

8. In the epoch (Manvantara) called Svāyambhuva, they (these sons of Yajña and Dakṣiṇā) officiated as gods, and were (collectively) called Tuṣitas; Marīci and others were the seven sages (Saptarṣis of that era) while Yajña, the incarnation of Hari, occupied the post of Indra (the rulership of gods).

9. Priyavrata and Uttānapāda, the sons of Manu, were endowed with great power and splendour. They, their sons, grandsons (both from sons and daughters) and their descendants ruled throughout the period (of this Manvantara)[3].

10. Oh Vidura, Manu gave his (second) daughter Devahūti to Kardama (a Lord of created beings). (History) relating to them has been already heard' by you as narrated by me.

11. Venerable Manu gave (his third daughter) Prasūti (in marriage) to Dakṣa (another Lord of creation), a mind- born son of Brahmā. Their progeny has very widely spread all over the three worlds.

12. Now, hear as I tell you about the sons and grandsons of the nine daughters of Karḍama who became the wives of the Brāhmaṇa Sages (born of Brahmā) and about whom I have spoken to you.

13. Kalā, the daughter of Kardama and the wife of the sage Marīci, gave birth to two sons—Kaśyapa and Pūrṇiman whose descendants have fully populated (filled) the world.

14. Oh conqueror of enemies (Vidura), Pūrṇiman was the father of (sons) Viraja and Viśvaga and (a daughter called) Devakulyā who washing the feet of Hari became the heavenly river Gaṅgā (in her next birth).

15. Anasūyā, the wife of Atri, gave birth to three illustrious sons, viz. Datta (god Dattātreya, the sage), Durvāsas and the Moon-god, each of whom was separately born (as a manifestation of the portion) of Viṣṇu, Rudra and Brahma (respectively).

Vidura said:

16. Oh Preceptor, please narrate to me for what purpose these (three) most eminent gods who are severally the cause of the creation, preservation and destruction (of the world), were born in the house of (the sage) Atri.

Maitreya said:

17. When the sage Atri, the foremost of the knowers of Brahman, was urged by god Brahmā (to undertake the work of) creation, he along with his wife went to one of the principal mountain ranges, Ṛkṣa[4] and was engaged in the performance of austere penance.

18-19. The mountain was covered with the forest of Palāśa and Aśoka trees which were beautified with clusters of flowers. All around, it was resounded with the echoes of the waterfalls of the river Nirvindhyā. On that mountain, the sage controlled his mind by means of Prāṇāyāma (breathcontrol) and stood for one hundred years on one leg, defying heat and cold (and such other pairs of opposites), and subsisted on air.

20. He contemplated (and prayed in his mind): ‘I take shelter under him who alone is the Lord of the World. May he bless me with progeny just like himself.’

21-22. Seeing that the three worlds were being distressed by the fire produced by the fuel of (the sage’s) breathcontrol (Prāṇāyāma) and issuing from the head of the sage, the three Lords (of the world, Brahmā, Viṣṇu and Śiva) went to the hermitage of the sage—the three Gods whose glories were extensively eulogised by celestial damsels, sages, Gandharvas (celestial musicians), and (demigods like) Siddhas, Vidyādharas and Nāgas.

23. The sage got his mind illuminated by the simultaneous manifestation of the three gods. (To show them respect) he stretched up his body (while standing on the leg), and saw those prominent gods.

24. (He paid them homage) by prostrating himself fully (before them) on the ground, like a stick. With articles of worship in the hollow of his palms, he respectfully received the gods who were severally riding a swan, Garuḍa and a bull and were characterised by their speciality (viz. possession of a Kamaṇḍalu, Sudarśana discus and a trident).

25. They directly expressed their pleasure by their gracious looks and smiling faces. The sage closed his eyes as they were dazzled by their (gods’) brilliance.

26. With his mind concentrated on them and with folded palms he praised, in sweet words of deep significance, the three gods who are the supreme-most in all the worlds.

Atri said:

27. You are (obviously the celebrated gods) Brahmā, Viṣṇu and Śiva who in every Yuga (kalpa), assume forms with the help of the guṇas (attributes) of Māyā, trifurcated for bringing about the creation, maintenance and dissolution of the universe. I bow to you all. (Kindly tell me) which of you has been invocated by me here.

28. In this hermitage, I have concentrated (contemplated) only on one glorious Lord by various means, with a desire to get a child. It is a great surprise to me how (all of) you who are beyond the range of the mind of bodied beings, have come here. Be pleased to tell me the mystery.

Maitreya said:

29. Oh Lord (Vidura), hearing this speech of the sage (Atri), the three prominent gods laughed. They replied to the sage in soft gentle words (as follows):

The gods said:

30. “Oh Brahman! As you have willed it, so shall it exactly happen and not otherwise. You are of true resolve. We three form that Principle (called rhe Lord of the world) which you are contemplating.

31. Oh sage! May you be blessed! from our aṃśa (parts) now you will beget sons who (themselves) will be celebrated in the world and spread your reputation as well.”

32. Having granted their desired boon, the Lords of gods who were properly worshipped by the couple, returned from that hermitage while they (Atri and Anasūyā) stood looking on (agape).

33. Thus Soma was born with a portion of Brahmā, Datta, the master of Yoga, with that of Viṣṇu, while Durvāsas with the portion of Śaṅkara. Now listen (to me), about the progeny of Aṅgiras (another mind-born son of Brahmā).

34. Śraddhā, the wife of Aṅgiras gave birth to four daughters viz. Sinīvālī, Kuhū, Rākā and the fourth Anumati.[5]

35. Besides these he (Aṅgiras) had two sons—Utathya who was the venerable Lord himself and Bṛhaspati (the preceptor of gods) the eminent knower of Brahman. They became celebrities in the Svārociṣa Manvantara.

36. By his wife Havirbhū, Pulastya (another mind-born son of Brahmā) had a son called Agastya who was abdominal fire in another birth and also (another son) Viśravas, the great ascetic.

37. Of Viśravas and his wife Iḍaviḍā was born god Kubera (the god of Wealth), the king of Yakṣas. Rāvaṇa, Kumbhakarṇa and Vibhīṣaṇa were born (to him) by another wife (Keśinī).

38. Oh talented Vidura, Gati, the pious wife of Pulaha, gave birth to three sons, viz. Karmaśreṣṭha, Varīyān and Śahiṣṇu [Sahiṣṇu?].

39. Even Kratu’s wife, Kriyā, bore sixty-thousand (thumb-sized) sons known as Vālakhilyas—all brilliant with the splendour of Brahman.

40. Oh tormentor of enemies (Vidura), by his wife Ūrjā (Arundhatī) Vasiṣṭha had seven sons of whom Citraketu was prominent. They all were pure-hearted Brāhmaṇa-sages.

41. They were Citraketu, Surociṣ, Virajas, Mitra, Ulbaṇa, Vasubhṛdyāna and Dyumat. He had other sons such as Śakti and others (by another wife).

42. Citti (or Śānti), the wife of Atharvan, got a son, Dadhīci alias Aśvaśiras who took the vow (of austere penance). (Henceforth) hear from me the race of Bhṛgus.

43. The distinguished sage Bhṛgu begot by his wife, Khyāti, (two) sons—Dhātṛ and Vidhātṛ, and a daughter, Śrī, who was devoted to the glorious Lord (Viṣṇu).

44. (The sage) Meru gave his daughters Āyati and Niyati (in marriage) to these (sons of Bhṛgu) severally. Of them (Āyati and Niyati) were born Mṛkaṇḍa and Prāṇa (respectively).

45. Of Mṛkaṇḍa was born Mārkaṇḍeya, and of Prāṇa, the sage Vedaśiras. Kavi, (another) son of Bhṛgu, had the venerable Uśanas (Śukrācārya, the preceptor of Daityas) as his son.

46. All these sages peopled the worlds by their descendants. I have narrated to you, Oh Vidura, the account of the progeny of Kardama’s grandsons (from daughters’ side)—an account which immediately removes the sins of the faithful and reverential listener.

47. Dakṣa, another (mind-born) son of god Brahmā, married Prasūti, the daughter of (Svāyambhuva) Manu[6]. He begot, by her, sixteen fair-eyed daughters.

48. The Lord (Prajāpati Dakṣa) gave thirteen of his daughters to Dharma, one to Agni, one to all Pitṛs combined, and one to god Śiva, who cuts the bonds of Saṃsāra.

49.[7] Śraddhā, Maitrī, Dayā, Śānti, Tuṣṭi, Puṣṭi, Kriyā, Unnati, Buddhi, Medhā, Titikṣā, Hrī and Mūrti—these (thirteen) are the wives of Dharma.

50.[7] Śraddhā gave birth to Śubha (auspiciousness), Maitrī to Prasāda, Dayā to Abhaya, Śanti to Sukha, Tuṣṭi to Mud (a daughter) [Muda?] Puṣṭi to Smaya

51-52[8]. Kriyā bore Yoga, Unnati, Darpa; Buddhi, Artha; Medhā, Smṛti (a daughter); Titikṣā, Kṣema and Hrī, a son called Praśraya. Mūrti who was the fountain-head of all excellent qualities, gave birth to sages Nara and Nārāyaṇa.

53. When these two (sages) were born, the universe rejoiced with great pleasure. The minds (of men), the quarters, winds, rivers and mountains—all became calm and serene.

54. Trumpets were blown in the heavens; showers of flowers rained; sages offered their prayers. Gandharvas and Kinnaras sang joyfully.

55. The celestial nymphs and goddesses danced; highest bliss reigned everywhere. (There was auspiciousness everywhere). All divinities like Brahmā (and others) attended upon (Nara and Nārāyaṇa) with eulogistic prayers.

Gods said:

56.[9] Salutations to the Supreme Man who, manifested in himself this universe created by his own Māyā power, just like the phenomenal appearance (e.g. a city of Gandharvas) in the (cloudy) sky, and who appeared today, in the house of Dharma, in the form of sages (Nara and Nārāyaṇa), for revealing the true nature of the Self.

57. May the Lord, whose real nature is to be inferred by the Śāstras, condescend to look on us, the gods, who have been created by him, by means of Sattva, for the protection of the world from the disturbances in the orderly existence of the world—his eyes which are overflowing with mercy and which surpass the beautiful lotus, receptacle of Śrī (or the home of Lakṣmī).

58. Oh child (Vidura), the two divine sages who were thus extolled and worshipped by the (multitude of) gods, blessed them by their look, and left for mount Gandhamādana.

59. Verily, those two part (-manifestations) of Lord Hari, have incarnated in this world as Kṛṣṇa, the descendant of Yadu, and the dark-complexioned Arjuna of the Kuru-race, for relieving the burden of the earth.

60. And Svāhā, the wife of Agni, gave birth to three sons—Pāvaka, Pavamāna and Śuci—all of whom are the deities presiding over Agni, and who subsist on sacrificial offerings.

61. They gave birth to forty-five fires. These forty-five fires, their three fathers (Pāvaka, Pavamāna and Śuci) and one grandfather (god Agni) make forty-nine fire-gods.

62. These are the fire-gods in whose name iṣṭis (small sacrifices) called Āgneya (pertaining to Agni) are performed during Vedic sacrificial sessions, by persons, well-versed in the Vedas.

63. The manes (Pitṛs) are[10] (1) Agniṣvātta,(2) Barhiṣad, (3) Saumya and (4) Ājyapa. They are either Sāgnaya (receiving libations of water through the sacred fire) or Anagnaya (receiving libations directly without agnaukaraṇa). Svadhā, the daughter of Dakṣa was their wife.

64. Svadhā bore to them two daughters—Vayunā and Dhāriṇī. Both of them were well-versed in scriptural knowledge and spiritual knowledge, and they expounded the same.

65. Though Satī, the wife of Śiva who was like him in qualities and character served him, she had no son.

66. (For) when she was quite young, she cast off her body of her own accord by Yogic process, as she was angry with her father who was antagonistic to her innocent husband, Śiva.

Footnotes and references:

[1]:

Putrikā-dharma: When a daughter is given in marriage on the explicit condition that the first male child of the daughter shall be the (adopted) son of the giver, it is called Putrikā dharma. This was done by one who had only daughters and no son. The obvious object was securing the continuity of one’s race. Padaratnāvalī explains that although Manu had sons, he laid down this condition as he knew that Lord Viṣṇu would be born to Akūti. He wished to secure Viṣṇu’s higher grace by becoming his adopted father.

[2]:

anapāyinī: Bhāvāratha Dīpikā, Bhāgavata Candrikā VC. point out that Dakṣiṇā was an aṃśa (part) of Lakṣmī. Hence the marriage of Yajña and Dakṣiṇā, though born as brother and sister, is not objectionable. Padaratnāvalī takes the ward to mean ‘One who has neither birth nor death’. Like Nārāyaṇa, Lakṣmī manifested herself to others as an āvirbhāva.

[3]:

According to Viṣṇu Purāṇa 3.2.48 every Manvantara (epoch of a manu) has the following batch of office bearers: (1) Manu, (2) seven sages—Saptaṛṣis, (3) gods, (4) The ruler of gods—Indra, (5) Ruling progeny of Manu. To these Bhāgavata Purāṇa 12.7.15 adds: (6) Incarnations of Hari. The dignitaries of these posts in the Svāyambhuva Manvantara are mentioned in the above verses.

[4]:

Ṛkṣa—The eastern part of the Vindhya range extending from the Bay of Bengal to the sources of the Narmadā and the Śoṇa—including the mountains of Chhota Nagpur and Gondwana in which the Mahānadī rises—GDAMI 168-69.

[5]:

These are the deities presiding over the 14th and 15th day of the bright and dark fortnights who came to designate those days. Thus Sinīvālī is the day preceding the new moon day. On this day the moon rises with a scarcely visible crescent, while Kuhū is the 15th day or the last day of the lunar month when the moon is invisible. Rākā presides over the full moon (15th) day, while Anumati is the 14th day in the bright half—Vide ASD. under these heads.

[6]:

Vide supra 4.1.11 above.

[7]:

Vide infra p. 427, note *.

[8]:

Dharma (Religion or Piety) is always associated with virtues or certain pious mental states. These are described as the wives of Dharma and his progeny from them.

[9]:

(i) By his Will or Māyā power, this created universe is supported on Brahman, but it does not affect the Brahman, just as colours blue, white etc. of the clouds, do not stick to the sky. Or the changes of form, such as that of a god or a subhuman being with which jīva is associated (when it is born in that particular yoni), do not affect the real nature of Ātman. The Lord has manifested himself as sages under the roof of Dharma in order to instruct the distinctness of Atman, Brahman, from the form of god, man etc., and to lead to liberation by this knowledge. We bow to that Supreme Person.—Bhāgavata Candrikā

(ii) His own Māyā has arranged (created) this universe on the support of Ātman like the cluster of clouds in the sky. For shedding light (explaining the nature) of the Ātman, he has manifested himself.—Sārārthadarśinī

(iii) Just as different, kinds of cavities, (ghaṭākāśa, maṭhākāśa) are in the sky, similarly the universe is arranged (created) in Yourself. Just as the sky is neither different from, nor circumscribed by, these cavities or vacuums, so also the Lord is neither affected nor delimited by the universe. The illustration of the sky is taken to emphasize the unattachedness and not unreality.—Bālaprabodhini

Subodhinī has not written his commentary on this skandha.

[10]:

These are main divisions of the Pitṛs: (1) Those who joined the manes by following only Smārta karmas are Agniṣvātta; (2) Those who joined forefathers after performing Agnihotra and Vedic sacrifices are Barhiṣadas; (3) Those who drink Soma in sacrifices and become Pitṛs are Somapas or Saumyas; and (4) Those who partake of ghee in sacrifices are ājyapa.

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