The Brahmanda Purana

by G.V. Tagare | 1958 | 319,243 words | ISBN-10: 8120838246 | ISBN-13: 9788120838246

This page describes description of the glory of vishnu which is Chapter 73 of the English translation of the Brahmanda Purana: one of the oldest puranas including common Puranic elements such as cosmogony, genealogy, ethics, geography and yoga. Traditionally, the Brahmandapurana is said to consist of 12,000 verses metrical Sanskrit verses.

Chapter 73 - Description of the glory of Viṣṇu

Sūta said:—

1. After propitiating Īśāna, Nīlalohita, the lord of the Devas, Śukra the preceptor of Asuras remained humble after prostrating at his feet. With palms joined in reverence, he spoke the words (indicating his wish).

2. After touching the body of the preceptor of the Asuras with his hand, the delighted lord, Hara, manifested himself to his view adequately and then vanished there itself.

3. When the lord, along with his followers, had vanished Śukra the preceptor spoke these words to Jayantī who was standing there with palms joined in reverence.

4. “O gentle lady of great fortune, whom do you belong to? Who are you who underwent misery when I was in misery? Why are you vying with me who am endowed with great power of penance.

5. O lady of exquisite hips and excellent complexion, I am highly pleased with this constant (unwavering), devotion, humility, self-control and affection.

6. O beautiful lady, what do you wish? What desire of yours is to be fully gratified? Even if it be very difficult to get, I shall get it fulfilled for you”.

7. On being told thus she said:

“It behoves you to know it by means of your power of penance, O very learned and pious one, you alone will know definitely what I have desired to do”.

8-10. On being told thus Śukra the preceptor of Asuras observed every thing by his divine vision and said to her:—“O excellent lady, you are the daughter of Mahendra. You have come here for my welfare. O Beautiful lady of excellent hips, you wish to be in touch with me for ten years without being seen by any living being. O gentle lady with the shining lustre of the blue sapphire, O excellent lady of bright eyes, choose this desire from me, O lady of sweet speech. Let it be so, O lady with the majestic gait of the elephant in its rut we shall go home”.

11-12. Thereafter, the holy lord Bhārgava reached his house accompanied by Jayantī. He lived there with her for ten years invisible to all living beings, after being covered by Māyā (Magical power of illusion).

13. After coming to know that Śukra had returned with his object realised, all the sons of Diti became delighted. Desirous of seeing him, they went to his house.

14-16. After going in when they did not see their preceptor because he had been concealed by Jayantī, they understood that it was the sign (of his not having returned.) They went back in the manner they had come.

Bṛhaspati understood that Śukra had been restrained by Jayantī for ten years for the sake of pleasure, due to the boon granted to her as well as due to her desire for the welfare of the Devas.

Considering that as a good opportunity, Bṛhaspati was urged through a secret council of the Devas. He assumed the form of Śukra and addressed the Asuras.

17-18. On seeing them assembled, Bṛhaspati said to them:—

“Welcome to you for whose sake I perform sacrifices. I have come back for your welfare. I shall teach you all the Lores acquired by me”.

Thereupon they became delighted in their minds and approached him for the sake of Vidyās.

19-21. At the end of the stipulated period of ten years, Śukra, the preceptor of Daityas, suddenly rememhered that ten years had been completed. He decided to look after his Yājyas.

Śukra said:—

“O gentle lady of pure smiles, I am going to see mine Yājyas O chaste lady with broad eyes of three colours, O lady of rolling eyes”.

On being told thus, the gentle lady said—“O sage of great holy rites, resort to your devotees. This is the holy virtuous dharma of good people. I will not make you err from your duty”.

Sūta said:

22-25. After going there, he saw that the Asuras had been deceived by the intelligent preceptor of the Devas in the form of Śukra. Thereupon, he spoke these words:—

“Know ye all that I am Śukra. This is the Aṅgirasa (i.e. Bṛhaspati). O Dānavas, you have been cheated even as I continue to be attached to you all”.

On hearing him speak in that manner, the Daityas became confused and bewildered. They saw both of them sitting firmly and smiling pleasantly. Thereupon, all of them stood there utterly deluded. They did not take up anything. (They did not do anything).

26-29. When they were confused, Śukra spoke to them again:—“This is (evidently pointing to himself) indeed your preceptor; this is (pointing to Bṛhaspati) Aṅgiras, the preceptor of the Devas. All of you follow me. Leave off this Bṛhaspati.”

On being told thus, they closely looked at both of them. The Asuras could not find out any difference between these two.

When without any excitement, Bṛhaspati said to them—“This man is Aṅgiras indeed. O Daityas, I am Śukra, your preceptor. This is Bṛhaspati in my guise.

O Asuras, this man makes you confounded though my form”.

30-33. On hearing his words they consulted one another and spoke these words—“This holy lord has been imparting instructions to us for the last ten years. Indeed he is our preceptor. This Brāhmaṇa is some-one (else) desirous of securing an opportunity”. Then all those Dānavas bowed down and made obeisance to Bṛhaspati. Deluded by the lore imparted by him, they accepted his words (as true). Those Asuras became angry with their eyes turning red and they spoke to him (i.e. Śukra).

“This is our well-wisher and preceptor. You may go. You arc not our preceptor. Whether he be Bhārgava or Aṅgirasa, let him alone be our preceptor. We shall abide by his command. Well, you may go. Do not delay”.

34-36. After saying thus, all the Asuras accepted Bṛhaspati as their preceptor and resorted to him.

When the Asuras did not pay heed to his beneficial utterance, Bhārgava became furious with their arrogance. Then he said thus:—

“Although apprised and instructed by me, you do not resort to me. Hence, you will lose your sense and attain defeat and destruction.”

37-38. After saying thus to them, Śukra went back the way he had come. On coming to know that the Asuras had been cursed by Śukra, Bṛhaspati became delighted that his object had been fulfilled. Knowing that the Asuras were doomed, he became pleased. He then re-assumed his form and disappeared from that place.

39-40. When he vanished, the Dānavas became perplexed. They spoke thus to one another. “O fie upon us. We have been deceived due to our affection. We have been made disinclined towards piety by the Creator. We have been doomed in our own activities through fraud, and application of Māyā (Illusion)”.

41. Thereafter, the Asuras became afraid of the Devas. Hence, they hastened to follow Śukra, keeping Prahlāda as their leader.

42. After approaching Śukra, they stood around him with their heads bent down. On seeing that his Yājyas had approached him again, Śukra said to them:—

43. “You have been cautioned at proper time by me. But, since you did not pay heed to me or approve me you have met with discomfiture on account of that arrogance”.

44-46. Prahlāda then said to him:—“Do not forsake us, O Bhārgava, we are your own Yājyas. We have resorted to you. We are your special devotees. When you were not seen, we.were deluded by that preceptor of the Devas. It behoves you to protect us after understanding everything with your divine vision of long range. If you do not favour us, O son of Bhṛgu, we are cursed mentally by you. So we shall enter Rasātala”.

Sūta said:—

47. On understanding the facts as they were in reality, Śukra was soon pacified on account of his great compassionate nature. Then he ceased to be angry.

48. He said this:—“You need not be afraid. There is no necessity to go to Rasātala. This event was inevitable. Hence, it befell you even when I was alert.

49. Destiny is very powerful. It cannot be changed. As for the loss of your sense, you can regain it as you please.

50. “Has the time of succession come?” said Brahmā. It was due to my favour that the glorious realm of the three worlds has been enjoyed by you all.

51. A long period of time reckoned as ten Yugas, has been completed since you had attacked the Devas and ruled over their head. Brahmā had declared that much as the period of your rule.

52. In the Sāvarṇika Manvantara, you will have the suzerainty once more. Your grandson Bali will become the future lord of the worlds.

53. This period and the over-lordship of your grandson have been declared by Brahmā himself. Therefore, we did not have any sorrow when the worlds were recaptured.

54. Since Bali’s activities were not prompted by personal love or passion, Brahmā had become pleased and the kingdom had been bestowed upon him in the Sāvarṇika Manvantara.

55. Īśvara (lord Śiva) has told me that the kingdom of the Devas should pass on to Bali. Hence, he remains waiting for the proper time. He is invisible to all living beings.

56. (Defective text). Immortality has been granted to you by the delighted self-born lord Brahmā. Hence why should you be lacking in enthusiasm regarding the succession by turns? You get agitated suddenly.

57. It is not possible for me to make it. Predestined course of events move on beforehand. I have been prohibited by Brahmā who knows the future, O lord.

58. These two are my disciples. They are on a par with Bṛhaspati. They will support you when you are overwhelmed by or engaged in conflict with the Devas”.

Sūta said:—

59. On being told thus by Śukra of indefatigable activity, Prahlāda and other descendants of Diti went along with those two priests.

60-62. On hearing about that inevitable matter, the descendants of Diti and Danu, commended at once the Victory spoken of by Śukra. Wearing the armours and wielding the weapons, all of them challenged the Devas for a fight. On seeing the Asuras readily advanced for battle, the Devas made preparations for the same and fought with them.

This battle between Devas and Asuras lasted a hundred years. In it the Asuras defeated the Devas. The distressed and afflicted Devas spoke among themselves.

The Devas said:—

63. It is on account of the great power of Ṣaṇḍa and Marka that we have been conquered by the Asuras. Hence, by declaring a Yajña, something should be done conducive to our own welfare.

64. We shall invite them for a sacrifice and thereby conquer the Asuras. Then the Devas invited both Ṣaṇḍa and Marka.

65-66. They were invited to the sacrifice and told thus:—O Brāhmaṇas, let the Asuras be abandoned. After conquering Dānavas, we shall make you receive a share. In this manner Ṣaṇḍa and Marka left off the Asuras then.

67. Thereafter, Devas gained victory and the Dānavas met with discomfiture. After vanquishing the Asuras, the Devas approached Ṣaṇḍa and Marka (?).

68. (The Dānavas) who had no support, who were overwhelmed by the curse of Kāvya and who were once again harassed by the Devas entered Rasātala.

69. Thus the Dānavas were rendered inactive by Indra as well as due to the curse originating from Sukra.

70. When the cult of sacrifice became slack, lord Viṣṇu incarnated again and again in order to destroy Sin and reestablish Dharma (Piety).

71. Lord Brahmā pronounced that those Asuras who did not abide by the directions of Prahlāda were sure to be killed by human beings.

72. Hence, Nārāyaṇa was born of Dharma in the Cākṣuṣa Manvantara. The son of Vena (i.e. Pṛthu) made Yajña function in the Vaivasvata Manvantara.

73-74. When the son of Vena came into being, Brahmā himself was Purohita (Priest).

In the fourth reckoning of period of time called Yuga, when the Suras were in distress, he was born within the ocean (? the Varāha incarnation of Viṣṇu?)

In the case of slaying Hiraṇyakaśipu he became Narasiṃha (Man-lion), a second Rudra, with his son (? Prahlāda) placed in front.

75. When Bali, the lord of Daityas and the son of Virocana, was performing a sacrifice, he became a Brāhmaṇa, the delighter of the family of Aditi and spoke thus to Bali at an auspicious time:—

76. “You are the king of the three worlds. Everything is vested in you. It behoves you, O king, to give me three paces of land, so said the lord.

77. “I shall of course give”, said the king Bali the son of Virocana. Thinking him to be only a Dwarf he became glad and offered the same.

78. That Vāmana, O excellent Brāhmaṇas, the lord covered the entire Universe by means of three paces, viz. heaven, ether and Earth.

79. The lord Bhūtātmā (the immanent soul of all living beings) excelled even the sun by means of his refulgence. The glorious lord illuminated the quarters and interstices.

80. After taking away the Royal splendour of Asuras, the mighty-armed Viṣṇu of great prowess, brightened the worlds and shone.

81-85. He drove the Asuras along with their sons and grandsons to Pātāla. They were Namuci, Śambara and Prahlāda.

The cruel ones among them were killed by Viṣṇu. Completely shaken, the other Asuras fled to all directions.

The lord Mādhava, the immanent soul of all living beings, O Brāhmaṇas, showed a great miracle to the great elements along with the special forms as well. as īo Bali along with his army.

The entire universe saw itself in his physical body.

There is nothing in all the worlds which is not pervaded by the lord.

Devas, Dānavas and human beings became enchanted and deluded on seeing that form of Upendra (i.e. Vāmana). They were fascinated by the splendour of Viṣṇu.

Bali was bound with great nooses along with his kins—men and groups of friends.

86-87. The entire family of Virocana was confined to Pātāla.

Thereafter, lord Viṣṇu bestowed to the noble-souled Indra the wealth and glory of immortal beings (i.e. Devas). These three incarnations are remembered as his splendid divine manifestations. Then, the lord of great prowess appeared among human beings.

88-90. He had seven incarnations as human being. Understand them along with the leader (i.e. the priest or preceptor).

In the tenth Tretā Yuga, when Dharma became adversely affected, he assumed the fourth manifestation of Dattātreya. Mārkaṇḍeya was his preceptor.

In the fifteenth Tretāyuga, the fifth incarnation took place as Māndhātā, the Emperor. Utathya was his preceptor.

In the nineteenth Tretāyuga, the lord was born as the son of Jamadagni with Viśvāmitra as his preceptor. He annihilated all the Kṣatriyas. This was the sixth manifestation.

91-92. In the twenty-fourth Tretā Yuga, the lord took his seventh incarnation as Rāma, the son of Daśaratha, for killing Rāvaṇa, and had Vasiṣṭha as his preceptor.

In the twenty-eighth Dvāpara Yuga, the lord had his eighth incarnation, as Vedavyāsa. He was born of Parāśara with Jātukarṇya as his preceptor.

93-98. The lord Viṣṇu who was born of Aditi and Kaśyapa in the Vāmana incarnation took birth (as Kṛṣṇa) the son of Devakī and Vasudeva, with Gārgya as his preceptor.

The lord is incomprehensible. He is one who cannot be ordered about. He has perfect control over his senses. He has restrained his Kama (Love).

The lord sports in the world like a child with his toys. This powerful lord Viṣṇu cannot be comprehended.

There is nothing which is more excellent or greater than this lord of cosmic form.

At the close of the twenty-eighth Dvāpara Yuga, when Dharma was adversely affected, lord Viṣṇu was born in the family of Vṛṣṇi in order to carry out the annihilation of Asuras and to re-establish piety and virtue. The lord of Yogic power fascinates all living beings by means of his Yogic Māyā. Assuming human form, the Lord moves about on the Earth in a concealed form or disguise.

99-101. For the sake of his divine sport, the Lord took his incarnation among human beings with Sāndīpani also as his preceptor. During this incarnation the lord of great virility killed the Daityas who had taken up human bodies, such as Kaṃsa, Śālva, the great Asuras, Dvivida, Ariṣṭa, Vṛṣabha, Pūtanā, Keśī who came as a horse, the elephant Kuvalayāpīḍa, the athlete (Cāṇūra etc.), the lord of Rājagṛha (Jarāsandha) etc. The thousand arms of Bāṇa were cut off by the lord of miraculous activities.

102. Naraka was killed. So also the extremely powerful Yavana. All the valuable gems of the kings were taken away by him along with their splendour and glory.

103. The heroic warriors of the Kuru race were killed by him. So also the kings who were in the Rasātala.

These were the exploits of the Supreme Soul for the welfare, of all the worlds.

104. In this Kali Yuga itself, when the Sandhyā (Junction) period is yet to lapse, the lord will be born under the name Kalki and Viṣṇuyaśas. He will have great exploits and belong to the family of Parāśara.

105. It is the tenth incarnation which is yet to take place. Yājñavalkya will be his preceptor. He will be taking behind him an army full of horses, elephants and chariots.

106-109. He will be surrounded by hundreds and thousands of Brāhmaṇas who have taken up weapons. The powerful lord will put an end to the Mlecchas with the followers functioning duly. He will go round among the Udīcyas (Northerners), Madhyadeśas (Middle lands), other sides of the Vindhyas, Dākṣinātyas (Southerners), Draviḍas along with the Siṃhalas (those who stay in Laṅkā), Gandhāras, Pāradas, Pahlavas, Pavanas, Śakas, Tubaras, Śabaras, Pulindas, Baradas, Vaśas, Lampākas, Āndhrakas, Puṇḍras, and Kirātas. He will chastise those who are not very pious and in some places those who hate piety and devotion.

110-111. He will wander over the whole of the Earth without being seen by any living being. He will be born as a human being as the son of Devasena the intelligent.

The lord Viṣṇu who had been born in the previous birth as a powerful one, Pramiti by name, will be born in the Gotra of Candramas when the Kaliyuga is complete.

112-115. Thus these ten incarnations of the lord are remembered. He accepts different wombs in the three worlds partially, adopting at different periods of time, different physical bodies, and different purposes for the manifestations. He will be bora in the twenty-fifth Kalpa. For twenty-five years he will be exterminating the living beings and all human beings (?). With this cruel act, he will render the Earth left with only the seeds. He will subdue Vṛṣalas (low caste people) and almost those evil-doers.

Thereafter, Kalki will become contented along with his army.

116. Those who are not killed in this action, those who achieve something, will become deluded suddenly and fight with one another.

117. After the annihilation of all those, on being urged by the inevitable future events, he will establish himself in between Gaṅgā and Yamunā, along with his followers.

118-123. When Kalpa comes to a close, the kings will be destroyed along with their soldiers. Then the subjects will become free from restraint. When the arrangement for defence recedes, they will kill one another in battle. They will remove the wealth and property of one another. They will not have any pleasure in doing so. They will be excessively dejected. They will forsake cities and villages (and stay elsewhere). All their holy rites and devotional observances will become upset. They will have stunted growth. They will not live long. They will be staying in the forests like this resorting to rivers and mountains. They will have only leaves and roots to eat. They will be wearing bark garments, leaves or deer skin. They will be undergoing the terrible difficulties due to mixture of castes. They will be short-lived. Their means of sustenance such as agriculture etc. will be affected. They will have to face many harassments and obstacles. They will be miserable.

In this miserable plight, during that period of Kalisandhyāṃśa (Residual period of the close of the Kali Yuga), the subjects will become reduced in number. They will be affected along with the Kali Yuga.

124-126. When Kali Yuga lapses completely and when the Kṛtayuga begins to function once again, the people will resume once again every thing by nature and not otherwise.

Thus the entire activity of the Devas and Asuras has been recounted to you. In the context of the description of the race of Yadu, the great reputation of Viṣṇu has been recounted.

I shall now narrate the lines of Turvasu, Pūru, Druhyu and Anu.

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