The Padma Purana

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

This page describes the consecration of indra which is chapter 5 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 fifth chapter of the Bhumi-khanda (section on the earth) of the Padma Purana, which contains six books total consisting of at least 50,000 Sanskrit metrical verses.

Disclaimer: These are translations of Sanskrit texts and are not necessarily approved by everyone associated with the traditions connected to these texts. Consult the source and original scripture in case of doubt.

Chapter 5 - The Consecration of Indra

[Sanskrit text for this chapter is available]

Śivaśarman said:

1. O good son, today I am pleased with your penance, restraint, purity, and with your service to the elders and your devotion and resolution.

2. I (shall) abandon this deformed body; obtain happiness from me.

Saying so to the son, he showed that (former) body.

3. He saw both the elders (i.e. his parents), who became as they were before, who were bright, who were magnanimous and who resembled the orb of the sun.

4-5. He devoutly saluted the feet of both the noble ones. Then full of great joy, he, the best one, took his leave of his son, and due to Viṣṇu’s favour, his own religious merit and the practice of abstract meditation, the pious one went, with his wife, to Viṣṇu.

6-8. That sage entered Viṣṇu’s abode, a place difficult to be obtained. This place granting salvation is not obtained by means of other (kinds of) religious merit or penance, or by means of meditating upon Viṣṇu, or renunciation, or contemplation, or knowledge, or hynns of praise. Viṣṇu is not seen by means of gifts or pilgrimages. The highest place is seen (only) by resorting to concentration and knowledge, as the brāhmaṇa entered Viṣṇu’s body by means of deep and abstract meditation.

Sūta said:

9-10. Then that very lustrous Somaśarman practised penance there. He also looked upon gold and ornaments like a stone or a clod of clay. The righteous one had controlled his diet, he had given up sleep. Giving up all objects of senses he resorted to solitude.

11-12a. He had taken to the posture suited to profound and abstract meditation, was desireless and had no possessions. Then the time of his death arrived. Demons came to that brāhmaṇa, Somaśarman.

12b-16. When the time of death of him who was living (like that) at the great sacred place, Śāligrāma, adding to the honour of sages arrived, some demons and goblins who knew thus (i.e. knew that his death was imminent), spoke. The great sound (of the words uttered by them) entered the cavity of the ears of Somaśarman, the best brāhmaṇa. Fear of the demons entered him, who had adhered to knowledge and meditation. Due to that meditation and the fear of the demons the life of the noble one quickly departed. Being full of the fear of the demons he died.

17-18. Therefore, he was born in the house of the demon (Hiraṇyakaśipu) as Hiraṇyakaśipu’s son. In the war between gods and demons he was killed by Viṣṇu. The noble Prahlāda, while fighting well saw (the form of) Vāsudeva, endowed with the universal form.

19. Due to his former practice of abstract meditation, the noble one had the knowledge (of his former birth, so) he recollected all the former life of Śivaśarman:

20-22. “Formerly, I whose name was Somaśarman, entered the body of a demon. When shall I, due to my great religious merit, called knowledge, reach, from (i.e. casting) this body, the absolute, pious, excellent, abode granting salvation?” The noble Prahlāda, thought like this when he died formerly; O best of brāhmaṇas, listen. I have thus told you everything that removes (your) doubts.

Sūta said:

23-25a. When Prahlāda was killed in the battle by the disc-holder (i.e. Viṣṇu), the lord of gods, that beautiful woman, Kamalā, whose son was killed, wept. She was the mother of Prahlāda and the beloved (wife) of Hiraṇyakaśipu. Due to the grief caused by Prahlāda’s death she, the loyal, glorious wife, (of Hiraṇyakaśipu), who was dear to lamented day and night.

25b. Nārada spoke to her, who was weeping day and night:

26-27a. “Do not grieve, O noble and meritorious one, for your son. Your son, the very intelligent one, who is killed by Viṣṇu, will come back endowed with his own (former) characteristics.

27b. He will again have his name as Prahlāda.

28-30a. He will be without the demonish thoughts, and will be endowed with godhead; he will be saluted by all gods and will enjoy the position of Indra, O good lady. O illustrious lady, always be happy with that son. (Please) do not reveal this good news to anyone. You should feign ignorance, and always keep this as a great secret.”

30b. Saying so, the brāhmaṇa, the best sage, Nārada, left.

31-33. He (i.e. Prahlāda) got an excellent birth in the womb of Kamalā (i.e. Prahlāda was born as the son of Kamalā). He was named Prahlāda; the account of that illustrous one (will be narrated by me). O brāhmaṇas, when he was a child, he thought of Kṛṣṇa (i.e. Viṣṇu) only. Due to the favour of Narasiṃha (i.e. Viṣṇu) he would be the king of gods in heaven. After having obtained godhead, he would also get the position of Indra; he, the all-wise, will attain salvation—Viṣṇu’s abode.

34. There are innumerable glorious individuals, there are many forms of creation. (So) the great-souled, wise ones should not commit errors.

35-36. O best brāhmaṇas, I have told you everything that you have asked. O glorious one (ones) you may ask anything else. I shall remove your doubt: (I shall tell you about) the victory of gods and the destruction of demons brought about by the lord of gods, and (about) how he re-established the three worlds.

The sages said:

37. Who got the position of Indra, which sustained the title of gods? O best of brāhmaṇas, tell (us) in detail, who gave (him) the position of Indra?

Sūta said:

38. I shall tell you in detail for which best merit the best one, the glorious one, obtained the position of Indra.

39-40. When all the demons were killed in the great war, and when the sinners were completely annihilated by the magnanimous Viṣṇu, gods along with Gandharvas, Nāgas, Vidyādharas, spoke, with their palms folded in obeisance, to Mādhava (Viṣṇu):

41. “O venerable one, O lord of gods, O Hṛṣīkeśa, our salutations to you. We are going to tell you something respectfully; (please) understand all that.

42-43a. O Keśava (i.e. Viṣṇu), make for (i.e. give) us a ruler, a protector, who is meritorious; (give us) a god, a king, viz. Indra, who is righteous and who would rule the worlds, and resorting to whom the beings in the three worlds would obtain happiness.”

Vāsudeua (i.e. Viṣṇu) said:

43b. O you illustrious ones, the best brāhmaṇa, endowed with the Viṣṇuite lustre, lived in my heaven for a long time.

44-48a. O you best gods, the period of stay in my heaven of that brāhmaṇa, that magnanimous devotee of me, was over. Due to Viṣṇuite lustre in him the pious one will be your guardian; and he loves righteousness; he, the best pious brāhmaṇa, will be your king and supporter for protecting you. The large-hearted son of Aditi will be known as Suvrata. He, the very powerful and very brave one will be Indra.

Sūta said:

48b-49. In this way, the lord of gods, granted best boons to the gods; then all the victorious and best gods went with Viṣṇu to see their father, Kaśyapa, and their mother.

50. The magnanimous ones saluted both (the parents) seated comfortably. Full of great joy, and with the palms of their hands joined, they said:

51. “Due to your favour we have attained to godhead.” Full of great joy, he (i.e. Kaśyapa) spoke (these) words to the gods:

Kaśyapa said:

52a-55a. You have always been following the virtuous path. Due to our favour and the power of penance, you have attained to the position of gods which is inexhaustible. To these I (now) give a boon: Full of great love you—gods, nāgas, Gandharvas and great deities—will be immortal, will not be subject to old age, will be imperishable, will have all your desires satisfied, and will be endowed with all perfections.

Viṣṇu said:

55b-56a. Well-being to you, O successful mother of gods; ask for a boon. I shall certainly give you whatever is desired by your mind.

Aditi spoke:

56b-59. O Mādhava (i.e. Viṣṇu), due to your favour I had become a mother. I obtained these sons that are immortal, ageless, eternal, and righteous and affectionate, O Madhusūdana (i.e. Viṣṇu), (please) listen: O Govinda, you are one who fully satisfies all desires and gives prosperity. Remaining in my womb (you should be born as) my son, so that with you as my son I shall be delighted. O lord, thus satisfy my desire, leading to prosperity.

Vāsudeva said:

60-65. For the mission of gods, you should go to (i.e. take up) a human form. Then I shall surely remain in your womb. O goddess, when the twelfth yuga comes, I shall, for removing the burden of the earth, and for killing all the kṣatriyas, be (born as) your son, viz. (Paraśu) Rāma, Jamadagni’s son, the best of brāhmaṇas and endowed with valour and lustre, and best among all those who wield weapons. Similarly, when the twenty-seventh yuga called Tretā arrives, I shall be, O loyal wife, (born as) your son, named Rāma. O you of pious mind, when at the end of Dvāpara, the twentyeighth yuga arrives, I shall be undoubtedly (born as) your son, by name Vāsudeva (i.e. Kṛṣṇa), for the destruction of all demons and for removing the burden of the earth.

66a. O you auspicious one, now please do what I tell you.

66b-70a. O you goddess, who grant everything, having created an omniscient, handsome son, I shall give the position of Indra, (so that) he too will be Indra.

Having heard thus that due to the favour of the lord of lords the son will be Indra, she was full of great joy. (She said:) “O magnanimous one, let it be so; I shall do as you tell me.” Then all the deities, free from fear and full of joy, went to their own abodes.

Sūta said:

70b-7l. Having gone to Kaśyapa after she was in menstruation, the high-minded Aditi (said to him:) “O revered one, give me a son who will enjoy the position of Indra.” The brāhmaṇa (i.e. Kaśyapa), having thought for a moment, said to the high-minded lady:

72-82a. “O illustrious one, let it be so. You will have a son, who will be the creator of the three worlds and also enjoyer of the sacrifices.” Having put his hand on her head, the lustrous, best brāhmaṇa, who was endowed with truth and piety, practised penance. O best of brāhmaṇas, he (i.e. the son) would always live in the heaven of Viṣṇu. O best of brāhmaṇas, when his religious merit would be exhausted, be would, due to (the fruit of) his acts, fall from there; then he, of a great penance, would go to the womb of Aditi, with the desire to enjoy the position of Indra. Due to her truthful and meritorious deeds, and due to her religious merit and penance, the goddess conceived. Having gone to reside in a forest, she practised penance without laziness. A hundred divine years passed, when the mother of gods was (thus) practising penance. She practised penance difficult to be practised by gods and demons. She, bright with that penance and lustre, resembling the sun’s lustre and (looking) like another sun, resorted to meditation and shone brightly. Then due to the lustre ofher penance, she looked superior in her beauty (i.e. looked more beautiful). That goddess, Dakṣa’s devout daughter, engrossed in penance and meditation, and feeding herself on air, shone more (i.e. looked more beautiful). All siddhas and sages, and gods of great prowess, closely intent (on looking after her), praised and protected the illustrious one.

82b-84. When a full hundred years were over, Viṣṇu came there. He said to that illustrious Aditi, endowed with penance: “O goddess, the foetus has fully developed; the time for delivery has come; the foetus is nourished by your penance and grown by your lustre. O you glorious one, today only you deliver the embryo.”

85-89. Speaking thus, the lord of the gods went to his own abode. When a very prosperous time arrived, the goddess delivered a son, who was lustrous, who was as it were another sun, who was pleasing, who was charming in all limbs, who was endowed with all (good) characteristics, who had four arms, whose body was huge, who was regent of a quarter, who was the lord of gods, who was covered with lustrous blazes, whose hands looked lovely on account of disc and lotus; who, the very intelligent one, shone with a face resembling the orb of the moon, who was very wise, who was adorned with the lustre of Viṣṇu, with other good characteristics and divine disposition, who was full of all (good) characteristics, whose face was like the moon, whose eyes resembled lotuses.

90-92a. The gods, the sages who had mastered the Vedas, Gandharvas, Nāgas, Vidyādharas, the seven sages, of inferior and superior prowess, came there. Other virtuous, magnanimous sages, giving merit and auspiciousness, with their minds full of joy also came there.

92b-94. When that glorious one of great prowess was born, all revered gods, all mountains, ascetics, milky and other oceans, unsullied rivers, all those that were affectionate and other mobile and immobile objects came there. All lords of gods happily celebrated (the occasion) with auspicious rites.

95-102a. The hosts of the celestial nymphs danced and the Gandharvas sang songs. Gods and sages who had mastered the Vedas praised the magnanimous son of Kaśyapa with Vedic hymns. When he of great prowess was born, Brahmā, Viṣṇu, Rudra and all the Vedas together with the Vedāṅgas and the Upāṅgas[1] came there. All the beings in the world that were endowed with religious merit came there only, when he of great prowess was born. With auspicious great festivals all of them performed sacred rites. The three gods led by Brahmā, as well as Kaśyapa and Bṛhaspati, of great prowess and full of joy and worshipping him, performed the naming ceremony of that magnanimous one. (They said:) “You will be known as Vasudatta; you are also (named) Vasuda; your names will be Ākhaṇḍala, and also Marutvān; you will also be known as Maghavan, Biḍaujas, and Pākaśāsani.” (They said to Aditi:) “This your son will also be known as Śakra and Indra.”

102b-105. All the deities, pleased and delighted in mind, gave these names to that magnanimous one only. The great gods took bath and performed the purificatory rites. Having called Viśvakarman, they gave that magnanimous one propitious and divine ornaments. All the gods of great prowess were thus glad when that glorious, magnanimous king of gods was born.

106-108. On an auspicious day, at an auspicious time, the magnanimous gods consecrated him with auspicious rites and established him as Indra. By the favour of the disc-holder (i.e. Viṣṇu) he obtained the position of Indra. That Vasudatta, the lustrous lord of gods, practised penance. He was endowed with brilliant lustre, and had held weapons like the thunderbolt, the noose, and the goads.

Sūta said:

109. Seeing the great, entire power of penance, Śukra uttered a verse: “In the worlds, there will be none else as much handsome as this one.

110. This other great magnanimous one has obtained this divine grandeur by Viṣṇu’s favour.

111. None else, of a strong power due to penance will there be in the worlds, who can be compared with this one”.=

Footnotes and references:


Sāṅgopāṅgaiḥ—With Aṅgas and Upāṅgas. The six Vedāṅgas are: (1) Śikṣā (Phonetics); (2) Kalpa (Rituals); (3) Vyākaraṇa (Grammar); (4) Nirukta (Etymology); (5) Chandas (Metrics); and (6) Jyotiṣa (Astronomy).

The Upāṅgas are said to be: Purāṇa-nyāya-mīmāṃsā-dharma-śāstrāṇi.

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