The Padma Purana

by N.A. Deshpande | 1951 | 1,261,945 words | ISBN-10: 8120838297 | ISBN-13: 9788120838291

This page describes the birth of garuda which is chapter 47 of the English translation of the Padma Purana, one of the largest Mahapuranas, detailling ancient Indian society, traditions, geography, as well as religious pilgrimages (yatra) to sacred places (tirthas). This is the forty-seventh chapter of the Srishti-khanda (section on creation) of the Padma Purana, which contains six books total consisting of at least 50,000 Sanskrit metrical verses.

[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]

Nārada said:

1-2a. Due to your favour I have understood who the most meritorious Brāhmaṇa is (i.e. I have understood the characteristics of the most meritorious brāhmaṇa). O best of gods, if you desire (i.e. have) affection for me, quickly tell me, so that I shall understand, O lord of gods, (the characteristics of) a mean brāhmaṇa by his acts.

Brahmā said:

2b-4a. That is a mean brāhmaṇa, who has fallen from the ten kinds of baths, and from presenting libations of water[1] to the manes of the deceased ancestors; also one who has abandoned the (offering of) prayers and restraint; one who has fallen from worship of gods and from vows, and from learning the Vedas; and from truth, purity etc.; and from the knowledge of abstract meditation and offering oblations into fire.

4b-6. The great sages have recommended five (kinds of) baths for brāhmaṇas: Āgneya, Vāruṇa, Brāhma, Vāyavya and Divya. Āgneya is said to be a bath with ashes (i.e. besmearing the body with ashes); Vāruṇa is said to be a bath with water; Brāhma is said to be a bath accompanied by the hymn ‘Āpohiṣṭha’; Vāyavya is said to be a bath of sun-dust; the divine bath is said to be with the rain during sun-shine.

7-8. One taking bath with these with (the recital of) sacred hymns would obtain (the fruit of a bath) at the sacred places. It is said in the Smṛti texts that the water in contact with a tulasī-leaf, and the water flowing from Śāligrāma, and that water which is touched by the horns of cows, and that water with which the feet of a brāhmaṇa are washed is purer than that which is purified by prominent preceptors.

9. A wise man obtains that fruit with these baths which (fruit) he gets by giving (gifts), (visiting) sacred places, devotional acts, vows and sacrifices.

10-11. A man who everyday avoids offering libations to the manes of the dead ancestors is a killer of them and goes to hell; he who avoids the daily prayers is a killer of brāhmaṇas (and goes to hell); and the meanest brāhmaṇa is he who is free from (i.e. who neglects) sacred hymns, vows, and is devoid of the virtues accruing from Vedic learning and avoids sacrifices and presents.

12. These five are mean brāhmaṇas: one bargaining for money (i.e. the fees to be paid to a priest) at a sacrifice; one subsisting upon the offerings made to an idol[2]; a bad astrologer[3]; one conducting religious ceremonies for all classes[4]; and one always dallying with others' wives.

13. Also those brāhmaṇas who have not undergone purificatory rites to the accompaniment of sacred hymns, who are without purity and restraint, who eat aimlessly, and who are wicked are most mean.

14. Those brāhmaṇas who are given to stealing, who are ignorant, who are without (i.e. who do not observe) all rules of dharma, and who always go astray are the meanest.

15. All those brāhmaṇas who do not perform rites like śrāddha, who do not serve their preceptors, who do not recite sacred hymns, and who violate the boundaries (of good behaviour) are the meanest.

16. All these wicked ones should not be talked to, and all of them go to hell; they are impure; are of a bad conduct, and should not be at all honoured.

17-19. Those brāhmaṇas, who subsist on a sword, who work as menials, who are engaged in driving bulls, who work as artisans, who work as usurers, who deal in children, who indulge in sorcery, who resort to śūdras, who are ungrateful, and who kill their preceptors—all these are said to be mean; and those other brāhmaṇas who discard (good) conduct, who are heretics, who condemn righteousness and various kinds of gods, who hate brāhmaṇas (are mean).

20-21. Yet a brāhmaṇa is never to be killed; because, O best of brāhmaṇas, a man becomes a brāhmaṇa-cide by killing him. A brāhmaṇa who has fallen into the castes of śūdras, mlecchas and cāṇḍālas due to (desire for) food or sex, should never be killed.

22. The brāhmaṇahood (of a brāhmaṇa) perishes by having sex with women of all castes and by eating all things that are forbidden; (but such a brāhmaṇa) again becomes a brāhmaṇa as a result of his religious merit.

Nārada said:

23. O you grandsire of all the worlds, what position does a man, who, having done such bad deeds, practises merit, go to?

Brahmā said:

24. He who, even after having committed all kinds of sins, restrains his senses, is free from all sins, and again deserves brāhmaṇahood.

25. O son, listen to an old, charming and wonderful story: The son of a certain brāhmaṇa became endowed with youth.

26. Then due to exuberance of youth and delusion as a result of deeds in the former (existence), he approached a cāṇḍālī, and instantly became dearer to her.

27-29. He generated sons and daughters on her; having given up (the members of) his own family, he lived in her house for a long time. He did not eat any prohibited food, nor did he drink wine. She (cāṇḍālī) always said to him: “(You do not eat prohibited food; at least) drink (some or) other (kind of) wine”. He said to her: “O dear one, please do not talk (about) filthy things. I always get a vomitting sensation at the mention of it (i.e. wine).”

30-31. Once, being fatigued due to hunting he was asleep in the house by day. She took wine and with a smile put it into his mouth. Then from the brāhmaṇa's mouth fire blazed all around. That flame burnt the house with family and wealth.

32-33. Then the brāhmaṇa rose, saying ‘alas!’, and wept. After lamenting he started inquiring: ‘Wherefrom did the fire rise? How is this fire in my house? (What is the cause of the fire in my house?). Then a voice in the (i.e. from the) sky said: “It is your (inherent) lustre (as a brāhmaṇa).”

34-35. When it (i.e. the account) was narrated as it had taken place, the brāhmaṇa was amazed. The lustre in the sky, having reflected over the matter, spoke again: “Your fine lustre has vanished; therefore, practise piety.” Then the brāhmaṇa having gone to excellent sages, asked them about his well-being.

36-40. All the sages said to him: “Practise the pious acts of giving in charity”. The sages said: “Brāhmaṇas are purified from all sins by restraints and vows. Observe the restraints laid down in the sacred texts for purifying yourself. Repeatedly observe quickly for removing your sins, divine vows like Cāndrāyaṇa[5] Kṛcchra, Taptakṛcchra, Prājāpatya[6]. Go to the pure sacred place and worship Govinda. Soon your sins will completely perish. Due to the power of the holy places and of Govinda, your sins will perish and you will obtain Brāhmaṇahood. O dear one, listen to an old account as we shall narrate it:

41-43. O son, formerly, the bird Garuḍa, the young one, desired food and as soon as he came out of the egg, he, being hungry, said to his mother: ‘Give me food.’ Then the mother seeing her son Garuḍa, very mighty and resembling a mountain, with a delighted mind said: ‘O son, I am not at all able to pacify your hunger.

44-45. Your father, the religious-minded Kaśyapa, who is actually the grandsire of the world, practises penance on the shore of (the ocean called) Lauhitya. Go there and ask (i.e. tell) him what your desire is. By his instruction your hunger will be satiated.’

46. Then hearing the words of his mother, the very powerful Vainateya (i.e. Garuḍa), having the speed of the mind, reached his father’s vicinity in a short while.

47-48. The bird, seeing his father, that best sage, blazing like fire, saluted him by bowing his head, and said: ‘I the son of you, the magnanimous one, have come to you with a desire for food. O protector, O lord, I am oppressed with hunger.’

49. Then resorting to meditation, and knowing him to be Vinatā’s son, the best sage, through affection for his son, said these words:

50-51. ‘Hundreds of thousands of (most sinful) bhillas reside on the beach of the lord of rivers. Eat them up and be happy. These unconquerable crows at the holy places are destroying the holy places. Without being particular eat these bhillas excepting a brāhmaṇa.’

52-53. Thus addressed, the bird left, and ate them up. He even swallowed a brāhmaṇa as he did not know his (true) condition. That brāhmaṇa stuck fast to his throat. The best bird could neither vomit nor swallow him.

54. Going to his father he said: ‘O father what is this (that has happened) to me? I cannot remove the being that has stuck to my throat.’

55. Hearing those words of (i.e. uttered by) him Kaśyapa said to him: ‘O son, I had told you beforehand. You have not recognized this brāhmaṇa.’

56. Then the pious, wise sage, saying so, said to the brāhmaṇa: ‘Come near me: I shall tell you what is beneficial to you.’

57-58. Then that brāhmaṇa said to the best sage, Kaśyapa: ‘All these are always my friends; they are my relations; they are dear to me: (some of them) are my fathers-in-law, brothers-in-law, and my kinsmen; others are there with their children. With these I shall go even to an inauspicious hell.’

59. Hearing these words of (i.e. uttered by) him, Kaśyapa, being amazed, said: ‘You, who have been born in the family of brāhmaṇas, have fallen with the cāṇḍālas.

60. Your men (i.e. relatives) certainly live in a terrible hell. In no way they will have acquittal for a long time.

61. A man becomes happy only by giving up the sinful, wicked cāṇḍālas and by avoiding sins; not otherwise.

62. He, who (first) commits a terrible sin through ignorance or delusion and then practises righteousness, would go to an excellent place.

63. If a sinner practises righteousness and then again thinks of committing sins, he sinks as a person getting into a stone-boat sinks in the ocean.

64. He, who, having committed all (kinds of) sins, and (having collected) a heap of misfortunes, becomes appeased later, destroys those sins.’

65-66. Then the brāhmaṇa said to the very intelligent, best brāhmaṇa sage: ‘If this bird will not release all my relatives, then, with this bird striking my vitals, I shall give up my life; otherwise let him free my relatives; this is the vow of me, who am determined.’

67. Then the sage, due to the fear of the murder of a brāhmaṇa said to Garuḍa: ‘Vomit fully all these mlecchas along with the brāhmaṇa.’

68. Then the lord of lords, at the bidding of his father, quickly vomitted them in forests, in the vicinity of mountains and in (various) directions.

69. Then appeared the hair-less, beard-less yavanas, fond of food; also some who had small beards.

70. In the south-east appeared the sinful Nagnakas (i.e. the naked); in the south (appeared) the Avācakas (i.e. who were dumb); they were fearful, were delighted in killing beings, were wicked and ate the (flesh of) cows.

71. In the south-west (appeared) the Kuvadas (i.e. who talked badly), who were sinners and who were ready to kill cows and brāhmaṇas; in the west (appeared) the Kharpas (i.e. cheats); in the east lived (i.e. appeared) the Dāruṇas (i.e. the terrible ones).

72. In the north-west (appeared) the full-bearded Turks, who ate the (flesh of) cows; they were mounted on the backs of horses and did not return (i.e. flee) from great battles.

73. In the north (appeared) the Mlecchas, living in the mountains. They were omnivorous and wicked and were, it is said, engaged in killing and binding (others).

74. In the north-east were the Nirayas living on trees. These Mlecchas, by the mere touch of whom one should enter water with all one’s clothes on, who were terrible and held weapons in their hands, remained (i.e. appeared) in the (different) directions.

75-76. In the Kali-yuga, void of piety, and a bad time, people everywhere touch these (Mlecchas) through greed for wealth. The bird (i.e. Garuḍa) freed the Mlecchas and being oppressed by hunger, said again: ‘O father, hunger is oppressing me more’.

77-78. Kaśyapa there said to Garuḍa who was melted with tenderness: In one region of the ocean, there are a big elephant and a tortoise desiring to kill (each other); they are immeasurable (i.e. of a very huge size) and are very energetic.

79-80. Those (two remaining) in the water, will, O son, quickly satiate your hunger’. Hearing the words of his father, he, very powerful, and of a great speed, went there, attacked the elephant and the tortoise and tearing them with his nails, flew into the sky with the speed of lightning after seizing them.

81-83. The Mandara and other mountains could not serve as a prop for him. Then the very mighty (Garuḍa) going with wind’s speed for (a distance of) two lakh yojanas, dropped (himself with them) on a huge branch of a jambu-tree. Suddenly the branch gave way. The powerful (Garuḍa), fearing the death of cows and brāhmaṇas, quickly supported that falling branch.

84-85a. Viṣṇu, taking up a human form, went to the charming and mighty (Garuḍa) who was moving fast holding the branch and said to him: ‘O best of birds, who are you? Why are you moving in the sky, holding the huge branch and the huge elephant and tortoise?’

85b-86. Then the bird (i.e. Garuḍa) said to Hari (i.e. Viṣṇu) in human form; ‘O you of mighty arms, I am Garuḍa, having the form of a bird due to my deeds. I am the son of Kaśyapa, born from the womb of Vinatā.

87. See these great animals seized by me for eating them up. Neither the earth, nor the trees and mountains can support me.

88. Seeing the jambu-tree after (having flown for) many yojanas, I fell on its branch with these two to eat them up (after sitting on the branch).

89-90a. That branch suddenly broke. Holding the branch, I am wandering. O wise one, fear and dejection have entered me (i.e. my mind), as a result of the murder of crores of brāhmaṇas and cows.

90b-91. ‘What should I do? How should I go? Who would put up with my speed?’ When (Garuḍa) had said this, Hari then said to that best of birds: ‘Mounting on my arm, you eat up these elephant and tortoise’.

Garuḍa said:

92-93. ‘(Even) the oceans and best mountains are not able to support me; then how can you hold (i.e. support) a strong being like me? Who else except Nārāyaṇa (i.e. Viṣṇu) is able to hold (i.e. support) me? He alone is the man in the three worlds, who can put up with my force.’

Hari (i.e. Viṣṇu) said:

94. ‘A wise one should save his own affair first; do (i. e. get) your work (done) now; having done (i.e. having got done) your work you will certainly know me’.

95. Having seen that very mighty (Viṣṇu) and having mentally reflected, the bird (i.e. Garuḍa), saying, ‘Let it be so’, jumped on his great arm.

96. When the lord of the birds fell upon his (i.e. Viṣṇu’s) arm, it did not move. Remaining there, he dropped the branch on the abode of the mountains (i.e. the earth).

97. Just at the fall of the branch, the earth, with the mobile, the immobile and the forests, trembled. The oceans also trembled (i.e. were agitated).

98. Then he rashly ate up the two animals, the elephant and the tortoise. He was not satisfied. His hunger was not satiated.

99. Knowing (i.e. seeing) this Govinda (i.e. Viṣṇu) said to the lord of birds: ‘Eat the flesh of my arm and be happy.’

100. When he said this, O son, he, through hunger, ate a lot of flesh of his arm; but there was no wound on his (arm).

101. Then the highly intelligent one said to Hari (i.e. Viṣṇu) the lord of the mobile and immobile: ‘Who are you? What proper thing dear to you should I do today?’

Nārāyaṇa (i.e. Viṣṇu) said:

102a. ‘Know me to be Nārāyaṇa, who has come here to do what is dear to you.’

102b-104. And for convincing him he showed him his own form. Seeing him who had put on a yellow garment, who was dark like a cloud, who had four arms, who was pleasing, who had held a conch, a disc, a mace and a lotus, and who was the lord of gods, Garuḍa, saluting him by bowing his head (said to him): ‘O best man (i.e. Viṣṇu), tell me what thing dear to you should I do?’

105. Viṣṇu, the lord of the lords of gods and very lustrous, said to him: ‘O brave one, O friend, be my vehicle for all times’.

106-107a. To him the greatest among the birds said: ‘O lord of gods, I am fortunate. O lord, O master, on having seen you my life is fruitful. Having requested my parents, I shall approach you.’

107b-108. Viṣṇu, being pleased, said this: ‘Be ever young and immortal; you will not be killed by any being; your deeds and lustre will be like mine. May you (have the power to) move at all places; may you certainly have all happiness.

109. May you obtain whatever you have in mind. You will easily obtain food desired by you and to your liking.

110. You will instantly deliver your mother from her calamity. (What I say will not be) otherwise.’ Saying so Hari (i.e. Viṣṇu) instantly disappeared there only.

111. Then Garuḍa also, having gone to his father, told him everything. Hearing that, and with his heart pleased, he (i.e. Kaśyapa) again said to his son (i.e. Garuḍa):

112. ‘O greatest among birds, I am fortunate; so also is your auspicious mother. The wife and family of him whose son you are like this, are blessed.

113. He in whose family such an excellent male, devoted to Viṣṇu is born, will having emancipated a crore (of members of his) family go to the same heaven as of Viṣṇu.

I 14-115. He who worships Viṣṇu everyday, who meditates upon him, who sings (songs in is praise), who always mutters Viṣṇu’s hymn, who recites his eulogy, who eats food offered to him, who fasts on the day of (i.e. auspicious to) Viṣṇu, is relieved after the destruction of all his sins—there is no doubt about it.

116. That best man in whose mind Viṣṇu resides, alone would always get Viṣṇu’s servitude (i.e. would always become his humble devotee) by means of his religious merit.

117. Having collected good deeds (i.e. merit due to good deeds) for thousands of crores of existence, he would, due to the exhaustion of all his sins, be the servant of Viṣṇu.

118-119a. Such a man is fortunate in the world and would get the likeness of Viṣṇu. That man is the best with whom Viṣṇu, the immutable lord of the worlds, always worshipped by excellent gods, is well-pleased.

119b-120. Viṣṇuis not obtained (even) by gods with (i.e. after practising) austerities, and with many and various kinds of sacrifices; you are getting (i.e. you have obtained) him. Relieve your mother from the terrible calamity caused by her co-wife.

121-122. Having retaliated for your mother, you will go to that lord of gods.’

Securing his father’s order and having received a great boon from Viṣṇu, Garuḍa, being delighted, went to his mother and remained before her after having saluted her.

Vinatā said:

122b-123a. O son, you had your food today; you also met your father. Why (then) are you late? I am afflicted with anxiety.

123b-124a. Hearing these words of his mother, Garuḍa, laughing a little, told her the account. Having heard it she was amazed:

124b-126a. ‘(Though) a child how did you do that feat difficult to perform? I am blessed; my family is blessed since you became the friend of Viṣṇu. Seeing that (you have) obtained a great boon (from Viṣṇu) my mind is delighted. O you (my) son, by your valour you have emancipated both my families (i.e. of my father and of my husband).’

Suparṇa (i.e. Garuḍa) said:

126b-127a. O mother, tell me what I should do that is dear to you? Having done that mission (entrusted to me by you) I shall go to the vicinity of Nārāyaṇa (i.e. Viṣṇu).

127b-129a. Hearing this, that chaste Vinatā said to Garuḍa: ‘I am suffering from a great calamity. Adopt a remedy against it. My sister is my co-wife. She has formerly purchased me. I have become her servant. Who will save me from it (i.e. her servitude)?

129b-130a. When her sons—the great serpents—had rendered (the Sun’s) horse black by means of poison, she said to me that the horse would become black at dawn.

130b-131a. Then I said (i.e. to this I replied)—‘This (horse) is always white in colour. Your words are untrue.’ Then she made a solemn declaration.

131b-132. Then I swore at Kadrū, the mother of the serpents. At that time I said to her: ‘If this horse of the Sun becomes black, then I shall be your servant.’

133-134. Then when her clever sons rendered the Sun’s horse black, I became her servant. O you delighting the family, when I shall give her wealth as desired by her, I shall be free from her servitude.’

Garuḍa said:

135. O mother, ask her quickly; I shall retaliate. I shall eat up those serpents; this is my proper pledge.

136. Then that unhappy Vinatā said this to Kadrū: ‘O you auspicious one, tell me what you desire, so that I shall be free from the difficulty.’

137. That wicked one said: ‘Give me nectar’. Hearing these words, she became gloomy.

138. Then that miserable (Vinatā) slowly came to her son, and said to him: ‘The sinful one asked for nectar; O son, what will you do (now)?’

139. Hearing these words, Garuḍa, getting excessively angry (said:) ‘O mother, I shall bring nectar; do not be grieved’.

140. Saying so, he speedily went to his father. ‘O sinless one, now I shall get nectar for my mother’.

141-143. That sage, after hearing these words uttered by him, said to the lord of birds: ‘Above Satyaloka there is a city fashioned by Viśvakarman for the good of the worlds. It is beautiful with an assembly; it is inaccessible due to fire and ramparts; it is unassailable by demons and gods. Gods have fashioned there a mighty god for its protection. He, whom the hero sees, would be reduced to ashes.’

Suparṇa (i.e. Garuḍa) said:

144. O best of sages, I have obtained a boon from Nārāyaṇa (i.e. Viṣṇu); O father, I have no fear even from the host of demons or of gods.

145. Saying so, and taking the water of the ocean the bird having the speed of mind, entered the sky, and moved (up).

146. By the wind produced due to (the movement of) his wings much dust was raised; the heap of dust left (behind by him) did not come near him.

147. Having gone (to the city), the mighty one put out the fire with the water in his beak. The god (the protector of the city), with his eyes full of dust, did not see him.

148-149a. The powerful one, killed the group of protectors and snatched the nectar. Indra, mounted upon Airāvata, going to the bird, bringing the nectar, said these words:

149b-150. ‘Who are you, that having taken up the form of a bird, are forcibly snatching nectar? Doing what is not liked by all gods, how do you (still) have attachment for life? I shall take you to Yama’s abode (by striking you) with arrows resembling fire.’

151. Hearing the words of Hari (i.e. Indra) the mighty (bird) angrily said: ‘I shall carry (away) your nectar; show (me) your valour’.

152. Hearing this, the mighty-armed (Indra) struck (him) with sharp arrows, as a cloud would strike the peak of mountain Meru with the shower of water.

153. Garuḍa, with his nails like the thunderbolt, pierced the elephant (i.e. Airāvata), and also Mātali (the charioteer of Indra), (Indra’s) chariot, (his) disc, and the advancing gods.

154. That Mātali of great arms was afflicted; (and also) the best elephant. Then all the hosts of gods were made to turn away their faces with the wind produced by his wings.

155. Then angry (Indra), desiring to win, struck him with his thunderbolt; (but) the great bird was not disturbed by the fall of the thunderbolt.

156. Noticing that his thunderbolt was ineffective Indra became afraid. Withdrawing from the battle then, he disappeared there only.

157. Moving speedily, he came down to the earth. The best of gods (i.e. Indra again) said to (Garuḍa) in front of the entire host of gods:

Śakra (i.e. Indra) said:

158-159. If you now give the nectar to the mother of serpents, she will certainly make all serpents immortal. Your pledge will be null and void; (and) you will not get the fruit of your life. Therefore, O sinless one, with your consent I shall take it away.

Garuḍa said:

160. O Indra, you will take away the nectar at that time when it will be known in all the worlds that that unhappy mother of me is free from servitude.

161. Saying so, the very powerful (Garuḍa), having gone to his mother, said to her: ‘O mother, I have brought the nectar. Give it to her only.’

162. With her heart blooming (with joy), and seeing her son with the nectar, she called her (i.e. Kadrū), and having given it to her, then became free from servitude.

163. Seeing that grass, wood, beings, beasts and reptiles, as well as gods with great sages were amazed.

164-165a. Having freed his mother (from bondage) Garuḍa was well (-disposed). In the meanwhile, Indra suddenly took away nectar and put poison there (i.e. in its place) without being noticed by her (i.e. Kadrū).

165b-166. Kadrū, with her heart pleased, hastily called her sons, and put the poison, having the characteristics of (i.e. resembling) nectar, into their mouths.

166b-167a. The mother (i.e. Kadrū) said to her sons: ‘Let these divine drops always remain in the mouths (of the members) of your family.’ They were happy.

167b-169. Great sages, gods, Siddhas, Gandharvas and human beings said: ‘O mother, let (these drops) be in (your) family by (i.e. as) our favour.’ Gods, with Siddhas and sages, dismissed by the serpents, gladly went home. The serpents were happy. In the meanwhile, Garuḍa forcibly ate up the serpents.

170-171. The remaining serpents ran and remained in various directions, mountains and forests, oceans, the nether worlds, holes and hollows of trees, and lonely bowers. The serpents are always his (Garuḍa’s) food, created by the creator.

172. He (i.e. Garuḍa) having eaten the serpents, and having worshipped the gods, went to the immutable Hari (i.e. (Viṣṇu)

173. He, who reads or listens to this auspicious account of Garuḍa, will be free from all sins and honoured in heaven.”

Footnotes and references:

[1]:

Tarpaṇa—Presenting libations of water to the manes of the deceased ancestors.

[2]:

Devalaka—A low brāhmaṇa who subsists upon the offerings made to a deity.

[3]:

Nākṣatra—One who subsists on predictions based on movements of planets etc.

[4]:

Grāmayājaka—A priest who conducts the religious ceremonies for all classes and is consequently considered as a degraded brāhmaṇa.

[5]:

Cāndrāyaṇa—A religious observance or expiatory penance regulated by the moon’s waxing and waning. In it the daily quantity of food, which consists of fifteen mouthfuls at the full moon, is diminished by one mouthful everyday during the dark fortnight till it is reduced to zero at the new moon, and is increased in like manner during the bright fortnight.

[6]:

Prājāpatya—A kind of fast or penance lasting twelve days, food being eaten during the first three days once in the morning, during the next three once in the evening, on the next three days only if given as alms, and a plenary fast being observed during the three remaining days.

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